But on Sunday at least there was a twist to the tale when firefighters from Leatherhead found an owner, Mike Wall, perched next to his feline friend.
Jadis, a six-year-old Maine Coon, had been missing for more than a day when Mr Wall’s wife, Chris, heard her calling from a tree in the grounds of Lavender Close in Leatherhead.
Mrs Wall said: “We had been up since 6.30am looking through the grounds, because it was so unusual for her to disappear like that.”
“I lock the cat flap at night so, when she didn’t appear, we were really worried because it was totally out of character.”
The couple eventually spotted the intrepid pet poised precariously on a fir in front of the block of flats, crying for help.
Neighbor Michael Jordan, 62, who often cat-sits for the couple, noticed the commotion and came out to help.
He said: “At first we tried to tempt her down with food on a stick but she wasn’t having any of it.”
So Mr Jordan brought out a set of ladders and Mr Wall scaled the 30ft to where Jadis was sitting.
Mr Jordan said: “It was really difficult getting the ladder up and then it twisted against the trunk, which made it awkward to get back down safely from that high.”
With Mr Wall in the same predicament as Jadis, the fire brigade were eventually called to the rescue at about 2.40pm.
Mrs Wall said: “He wasn’t very happy. He was up there for about 40 minutes, so it definitely wore him out.”
Thankfully it didn’t take much longer until both Mr Wall and Jadis were safely back on terra firma and the firefighters didn’t go home empty handed.
Mrs Wall said: “The neighbors were wonderful and I kissed the fireman when he came down and then burst into tears. I hadn’t any wine so I gave them a bag of cat biscuits as a small thank you because one of them had cats himself.”
A spokesman from the fire station said: “Having both the cat and the owner stuck up the tree was definitely a bit out of the ordinary.”