Cat Alerts Neighbor to Impending Heart Attack

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By Karen Harrison Binette

Pete White poses with Checquers


Heaton Norris, UK resident Pete White says his neighbor’s cat Chequers saved his life by warning him he was about to have a heart attack earlier this month.

Chequers came to the Whites’ door meowing to come inside on January 2 and stuck by Mr. White in a very uncharacteristic manner.

“She was howling at me and rubbing against my legs, which is very unusual,” said Mr White. “She wouldn’t leave me alone, she followed me all over the house howling away at me.”

Mr. White began having chest pains and at first thought it was indigestion, but he got a sense from Checquers’ odd behavior that something more was going on. “I suddenly thought ‘no, this is more’,” he said. “I picked up the phone and called an ambulance, I told them I thought I was having a heart attack.”

Mr. White was going into cardiac arrest as the ambulance arrived, and emergency responders worked for an hour to stabilize his condition. He was taken to Manchester Royal Infirmary for surgery, then went to a Coronary Care Unit, but is back at home now for a six week recovery period.

Mr. White gives thanks to his ‘furry little neighbour hero’ for saving his life, and says if he’d waited another five minutes before calling for help he could have died.

“In the Coronary Care Unit at Stepping Hill I was speaking to the vicar and told him what had happened,” he said. “He was impressed with the cat’s actions and said it was usually dogs who acted like that on rare occasions.”

Checquers’ guardian Peter Belshaw supports Mr. White’s belief that the cat  acted as she did because she sensed the impending crisis. “As a general rule she is quite a private cat,” he said.




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