23 November 2010

We dodged a bullet

Raven We’re meticulous about not leaving string, teaser toys, rubber bands, or little objects for our cats to get into. Over many years and 7 kittens/cats & a dog we’ve never had a problem with the animals getting into anything…..until now.

The other night Raven started vomiting violently. A small hairball came up, but not one I would expect to cause so much vomiting. The next morning she’s still vomiting, not eating, and not looking good, so I take her to the vet. The vet suspects she got into something and we went through the list: new food, human medications, holiday decorations, new toys, household cleaners….I couldn't think of anything. A few minutes later I remember I was trimming the edge off a fleece blanket and ended up with about a 15-inch strip a little wider than some yarn. Raven was laying on it and maybe I forgot about it when I picked up the trimmings. I would expect her to play and tangle herself in it, but I never imagined she would eat it. The vet was a bit skeptical too but says it’s something to keep in mind. He gave Raven medications and instructions for me to observe her carefully.

After 7 days of making 2 trips to the vet for lab tests, X-rays (showing her intestines were enlarged), medications to stop vomiting and keep her g.i. tract moving, sub-q fluids and at-home care with more medications and monitoring, Raven finally “produced” and I found the fleece!  I did forget to pick it up, and she did eat it (I still find it hard to believe she ate it). I’m just thankful she didn’t require surgery to correct an intestinal blockage and my mistake didn’t have more serious consequences.

This is my first, and hopefully last experience with a cat eating a foreign object. Raven is ok, so it will be a Happy Thanksgiving at our house.  She might even get to eat a little piece of turkey.

Please take a few extra minutes to go through your house and make sure it's as safe as possible for your pets. And remember with the holidays coming with all the extra decorations, ribbons, packing peanuts...that you take an extra look for items you never suspected your pets might get into.

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