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A five-week-old kitten became an unexpected passenger on a 55-mile trip from Merseyside to Staffordshire when it climbed into the engine of a van.
The stowaway, who has been named Ringo after the Beatles drummer, is “doing well” in RSPCA care after weighing just 0.6 kilogrammes when discovered.
The kitten was only found when telecoms engineer Dwayne Ofoeme and his two work colleagues stopped in Newcastle-under-Lyme and heard meowing coming from the engine.
Ringo is believed to have climbed in when the van left the Aigburth area of Liverpool.
“We’d travelled down the M62 and the M6 and we’d got out in Cambridge Drive to start work,” Mr Ofoeme said.
“We immediately heard meowing and thought it was just a cat under the van… I then got underneath to see exactly where the noise was coming from and spotted a kitten – I couldn’t believe it.”
According to those attending the incident, it took more than an hour to catch Ringo, who kept darting between the chassis and undercarriage of the vehicle.
“He was really scared and I tried for a long time to try and reach him but he just wouldn’t come out, so we decided to call the RSPCA,” Mr Ofoeme explained.
“He was such a character and we’re so pleased he’s OK.”
Ringo was finally lured out with a packet of cat food after RSCPA inspector Jackie Hickman arrived.
“The men were absolutely fantastic; they were extremely concerned for his welfare and did their very best to catch him, but unfortunately Ringo had other ideas,” the inspector said.
It transpired that Ringo had been clinging to the undercarriage of the van for more than an hour.
“How he’s managed (that), I will never know,” Ms Hickman said.
Ms Hickman confirmed that Ringo is in good health and is due to be vaccinated and microchipped in the coming weeks.
“He was seen by a vet and was very happy to have a little cuddle, so he’s definitely not a feral kitten and used to human company,” she said.
“If someone recognises Ringo and thinks he might be their missing pet, we would ask them to contact us.”