As the adage goes, “A cat has nine lives,” and this story of the luckiest cat, Gizmo, proves that he has all the luck of the nine lives assembled as he fell from 12 stories high from a penthouse terrace of a Manhattan apartment building. On his way down he landed on the third floor and then got wedged between a skylight and a wall.
It was expected that the fall would do more damage than the mild scratches on his skin and a broken tooth and it even shocked Samuel Jacobs too, Gizmo’s owner. Samuel had no idea of what happened, but he speculated that Gizmo must have gone past the door when it was open to the terrace. As Gizmo’s curiosity made him climb to the edge of the terrace wall, his lack of intelligence made him slipped off it.
Seeing Gizmo fell, the owner rushed through his neighbour’s window to take him to a vet before Gizmo succumbed to his internal injuries. When he reached the vet, the vet gave Gizmo a clean bill of health stating that he got some scratches and a broken tooth only apart from that there were no other injuries, internal or external.
Explaining the mystery behind the miracle of Gizmo’s severe fall and coming out with a negligible amount of injuries, it is said by science scholars that our feline friends are very flexible and can balance their whole bodies in the midair to land unscathed after falling from high places. When cats usually are 3-4 weeks old, they begin to develop what we call the ‘righting reflex’, which helps cats to twist in midair to land on their feet. Any cat around 7 weeks can perform it without any problem.
In a study, it was found that the injuries the cats sustain by falling are from 7 stories or below but when the heights get increased the cats can adjust themselves so that they land on their feet and not on their heads. The research stated that this was due to the cats’ ability to right themselves and their relatively low terminal velocity.