CHICAGO (CBS) — An Arlington Heights family has needed to spend a lot of time at the doctor’s office lately, after finding an uninvited guest in their home; but things could have been a lot worse, if not for an unlikely hero.

It all unfolded at a sleepy house on Haddow Avenue in Arlington Heights.

“We fell asleep listening to a TED Talk on hallucinations,” Julianna Cucci said.

In the dead of night, their cat, Wilson, pawed his masters awake.

“My husband swinging a pillow around the room, kneeling on my bed,” Cucci said. “He was saying, ‘Shut the door! Grab the cat! There’s a bat! There’s a bat! There’s a bat!’ I thought that he was having an hallucination. I had no idea what was wrong,” Cucci said.

But her husband wasn’t going batty. He was doing battle with a little brown bat.

“I shut the door, and I hear ‘baboom, baboom, baboom,’” Cucci said. “It sounded like the bat took on a human form.”

The family was able to capture the bat in a box, only to find out it later tested positive for rabies. As a precaution, the family has been undergoing a series of five shots.

“It really was just like a flu shot. It was not a big deal,” Cucci said.

She said the family is especially thankful Wilson was on the prowl that night.

“He was doing what any cat would do, especially a cat raised in a barn. He saw a bat and he was after it,” Cucci said. “Bats do a great service for our whole ecosystem. You just don’t want them in your house.”