Cat or Kitten?

Our cat Templeton recuperates in our guest bedroom after surgery to remove the sewing needle he swallowed

It’s the night of December 22nd. We’re preparing to fly to Texas in the wee hours of the morning to visit family in Texas over the Christmas holidays.

My wife comes into my office and tells me not to freak out but she can’t find her sewing needle. Doesn’t seem too troubling to me but when we get downstairs I understand her concern: the needle was attached to some black thread, and Templeton might have swallowed it.

Now Templeton’s a thread eater, no question, but he’s never swallowed a needle. He’s thirteen years old after all, a cat and not a kitten. No chance he swallowed it.

Right?

Wrong. We looked everywhere for the needle and couldn’t find it, so we took him to Dove Lewis Emergency Animal Hospital (great folks) and X-rays confirmed his stomach contents: lots of food and one sewing needle.

He had surgery that night to remove the needle, and fortunately a friend was able to keep him in her house while we were gone and keep a close eye on him. He’s back home now, isolated to the guest bedroom to keep him from running and jumping, with a clear plastic collar around his neck to keep him from pulling out his stitches.

We give him supervised time without the collar so he can bathe himself (except for the stomach), and it’s a lot easier for him to eat and use the litter box. He still smells a little different, enough that Scout hasn’t really realized who he is, although now that he can bathe himself a little she’s coming a lot closer. She only gets to be around him when we’re around, otherwise he’ll convince her to pull out his stitches for him.

He’s scheduled to get the stitches out on the 6th of January, so he only has to hold out for a few more days with his unwanted fashion accessory.

Let this be a lesson for my feline readers out there: eating thread is bad, eating needles is really, really bad.

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