HAIRBALLS may be a common hazard for cats but hair bobbles less so.
Not that Leia the long-haired ‘Ragdoll’ was aware until she swallowed more than 20 elastic hair bobble ties.
During her routine vaccination examination at Avonvale Vets in Warwick a hard mass was discovered in her abdomen and an ultrasound scan showed an irregular object in the stomach – resulting in her being taken into surgery.
Veterinary surgeon Simon Davies quickly found the cause of the problem – a large ball of some 20 to 30 multi-coloured hair ties belonging to Leia’s owner’s daughter.
Simon said: “We see all sorts of cases of animals eating things they shouldn’t, so nothing really surprises us. But it has to be said, we’ve never seen anything like this before.
“We’re pleased to report that Leia has since made a great recovery from the predicament she found herself in.
“Her owners told me Leia had shown a fondness for playing with hair ties and has a habit of putting them in her feeding bowl.
“Of course, they had been unaware that she was actually eating them.”
Eating such things can cause blockages if the object is too big to pass through the digestive system. In the case of Leia, it caused her to lose weight because the hair tie ball was taking up space in her stomach.
“Fortunately, this unusual case has had a happy ending and Leia is none the worse off for her ordeal,” added Simon.
“But it’s a timely reminder to owners to make sure items cats may be tempted to eat aren’t left lying around the house – no matter how unlikely it may seem that your pet will eat them.”