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By Luck or Design, Cat Dials 911, Saves Self

July 12, 1996| Reuters

TAMPA, Fla. — A cat who may have been within a whisker of choking to death on his flea collar managed to call 911 for help from police.

Tipper tried to slip the collar off while he was alone at home Wednesday. But the 9-month-old black and white cat only managed to work part of it into his mouth and began to choke, officials said.

Whether by luck or design, Tipper was able to knock a phone off its hook. Then he stepped on the speed-dial button that his owner, Gail Curtis, had programmed to dial the emergency number.

Within minutes, Deputy Joe Bamford was at the door and found the cat on the floor. Bamford and a handyman wrapped Tipper in a towel and performed the emergency collar extraction.

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