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Kitten hitchhikes from Silver Bay to Carlton

A small black and white kitten is held by its rescuer, Josh Nelson, a security guard at Black Bear Casino. The kitten was discovered tucked away in a car's frame where it hitched a ride from Silver Bay. Special to the Pine Journal

A small kitten used up one of its nine lives in what must have been a wild car ride from the North Shore to Carlton Tuesday morning. The fuzzy black and white kitten was discovered hiding in the underside of a car at Black Bear Casino by a member of security.

A concerned customer leaving the casino heard meowing coming from a parked car in the ramp and notified security. Josh Nelson, a Black Bear security guard, followed the tiny calls for help and located a silver Impala. Using a flashlight, Nelson found the little kitten poking its head out of a hole under the frame of the car in the trunk area.

"I found him under the strut housing on the back side of the vehicle," said Nelson. "I was able to get in there nice and gentle and pull him out."

After Nelson coaxed the kitten out of its hiding place, it snuggled contentedly in his arms. Nelson figured the kitten was about three months old.

When the owner of the car was called to the parking garage after the discovery, they expressed surprise about the little hitchhiker. The kitten was not theirs, nor did they recognize it, according to Nelson. The owners of the car said they had driven 77 miles from Silver Bay to Black Bear Casino that morning and were unaware the kitten had joined them.

Security made an announcement to find the car's owner and when Corrine Wick heard it, she decided to investigate. She was a newspaper reporter many years ago and is a cat lover. The petite woman already has cats of her own and tried to convince Nelson he should adopt the kitten. When another security guard agreed to adopt the cuddly kitten, Wick excitedly clapped her hands together.

"Oh good," said Wick, "now he doesn't have to go to Friends of Animals."