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Last Updated: Saturday, 12 August 2006, 11:45 GMT 12:45 UK
Cats discovered in cars' engines
Mele the cat (pic courtesy of RSPCA)
Mele is thought to have been hiding under the bonnet of a car
The RSPCA is trying to trace the owners of two cats which had stowed away under the bonnets of two cars.

A black and tabby kitten fell out from underneath a car as it was travelling down the A39 in Bude, Cornwall.

The other, a black cat, was found by a man who had driven from Winchester to Taunton, then on to Exeter, Newton Abbot, arriving finally in Plymouth.

Both animals are now being looked after by the charity. Neither of them were microchipped, the RSPCA said.

Noise heard

The 10-week-old black and tabby kitten forced a driver to slam on the brakes after they saw her rolling out towards them from the underside of a car in front of them near Mele Road in Bude.

She was picked up and taken to a local veterinary surgery where she was found to have a split lip. RSPCA staff have called her Mele.

It is not thought she was thrown deliberately from the vehicle. RSPCA officers said she had probably been hiding under the bonnet of the car.

Halloumi the cat (pic courtesy of RSPCA)
Halloumi is said to have been lucky to survive her ordeal

The female black cat, who has been called Halloumi, was found by the driver after he arrived home Plymouth.

He had been in Winchester, Taunton, Exeter, Newton Abbott, Totnes and Ivybridge before arrving home and the cat could have climbed into the engine in any of those places, the charity said.

RSPCA animal collection officer Simon Kite said she was incredibly lucky to have survived her ordeal.

Simon said: "The car owner heard a noise and when he opened the bonnet of his car to see what it was, the cat came out.

"She has obviously been hiding in a space in the engine and apart from a little oil on her coat, and being very scared, she was none the worse for wear."

The RSPCA said it would always encourage cat owners to get their animals microchipped.

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