July 29, 2015 06:30 PM

Cats may not like water, but some know how to outsmart it.

According to, a tortoiseshell feline was stuck inside a sunken boat for over an hour before she was rescued.

It is believed that the lucky cat, who has recently been named River by the Western Arizona Humane Society, snuck into a side panel of the powerboat while it was still docked (and dry) at Lake Havasu in Arizona. Unfortunately, River’s new living quarters got caught in the waves near a sandbar and ended up underwater.

An hour after the boat sank beneath the surface, John Zucalla of Dive Time Recovery located the vessel using sonar and pulled it out from 15 feet of water with lift bags.

The boat was then taken to a mechanic to flush all the water out of the engine, reports FOX10, but workers ended up flushing out a feline as well. The scared, wet, hungry and angry kitty was discovered huddled in one of the craft’s panels.

“I’ve been doing this for 15 years, and I’ve never found a live animal on a sunken boat. She was down there for an hour – it’s miraculous that she survived,” Zucalla said after the mechanic told him about River.

An expert at recovering sunken ships, Zucalla says boats often have pockets of air after they go underwater. River most likely found one of these air pockets and used it to survive during her time at the bottom of Lake Havasu.

Animal Care and Control picked up the cat from the mechanic and moved her to the Western Arizona Humane Society, where she is currently being cared for. Staffers say the cat was frightened when she came in but had no physical injuries. While the Humane Society looks for her family, River is opening up to workers and enjoying her dry abode.

The nautical kitty is not microchipped, and the sunken boat’s owner, Genaro Rudaldava, says he does not own a cat. The Humane Society is waiting several days to see if someone claims River. If no owner comes forward, she will be put up for adoption.

Houseboat owners may want to think twice about applying.

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