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My cat ate a hair elastic...

April 25th, 2012, 10:52 PM

I am getting quite concerned about my boy Gino.
Gino is long haired and has a tendancy to chew on things.
He has many chew toys he enjoys and plays with, to satisfy his chewing needs.

Around Christmas time, he chewed on/ate, a rubber band that was left to lay around by friends/family who were not aware of his tendencies.
I had no clue he had eaten it until I found it in his stool in the litter box.
As I always clean up right after they go.
Knowing his habit of chewing on things, I am always extra carefull with this.

Well it just happened again!
Gino chewed on/ate about 1/3 of a hair elastic, not the rubber kind, but the kind on the picture I put up.
I think he may have gotten hold of it in my bed, as it must have fallen out of my hair as I was sleeping...

I have been looking around the house like crazy trying to find the missing part, to no avail...
The hair elastic he probably ate is lime green in color, so it would be quite easy to spot in his stools.
But none of the litter trays have such an elastic in them.
Gino is eating normally, drinking normally, behaving normally, and using the litter as usual. I always keep an eye on the stools after he goes, but I just didn't see the elastic yet!
This happened about 48 hours ago.
I looked everywhere, moved every piece of furniture, dug in my trash can to see if I could have swept it up...even in my vacuum cleaner (have a Shop-Vac, so it's pretty easy to see what it collects), and did not find the rest of the elastic...

My question is the following: Should I give him some laxative, in order to get the elastic out?
Which ones are the best for this kind of situation? I really prefer a holistic, natural approach if it's the case.
Should I rush him to the vet for x-rays of his stomach (even tho he is having no pain, discomfort, and regular bowel movements)... Having him x-rayed would involve putting him under... Should I wait a bit more and see if it comes out naturally?
All this without being 100 per cent sure he did in deed eat the elastic...

Your advice would be greatly appreciated!


April 25th, 2012, 11:12 PM
My cat also ate a rubber band a few years ago. She was crying one day, and I got worried so I examined her, I noticed the rubber band hanging from her behind poor thing. :( We brought her into the vet and they were able to remove it. I think Gino sounds fine. Just keep on eye on him, eventually it will come out. I wouldn't put him through the stress of going to the vet. I hope this helped :)

April 25th, 2012, 11:16 PM

Yes, I would want to avoid the ''vet stress'' for both Gino and I, especially that when they do X-rays, they must sedate the cat...

I am just concerned as to know if he did eat it or not... and if he did eat it, how long should I wait for it to come out!

Loving my little boy so much, I am very stressed out, since it's been 48 hours... I just keep hoping he did NOT eat it, and it will show up in some place I did not look... But I looked EVERYWHERE...

I really hope he poops it out soon if he did indeed eat it!


April 26th, 2012, 07:34 AM
I have a cat like Gino!! He's has eaten all the drawstrings off of all my sweatpants and hoodies, amongst other in-edibles. I just keep an eye on him and make sure he's eating and behaving normally. If I panicked every time he ate something and took him too the vet, I'd be in the poor house and he'd be a totally freaked out kitty. This is going to sound bizarre, but he's barfed up items he's eaten weeks after he's eaten them. Don't know where he's storing them in there! So ya, just watch Gino but don't get too obsessed with checking his poo. Cause you may be waiting a while! Any sign of lethargy and/or inappetance, then maybe a vet visit would be a good idea.

Jim Hall
April 26th, 2012, 08:28 AM
in the words of a cat lady or 3

if it's eating pooping and being a pest it's fine

April 26th, 2012, 11:53 PM
Thank you everyone for your advice!

I do get a bit overly worried sometimes, Gino is still being his old self and going about his business as usual, so I will keep a close eye on him, and hopefully the elastic comes out, one way or the other!


May 1st, 2012, 06:50 AM
Hi everyone,

Still no news of the elastic, :shrug: and I have been monitoring Gino's visits to the litter box...

I really hope I was wrong, and that he did not eat it...

Gino's annual vet visit is due in August, and if I don't see the elastic out of him by then, I think I will ask the vet for an x-ray of his stomach/digestive tract, just to be on the safe side!

Gino is showing no signs of discomfort, and is eating and eliminating normally so far...


May 1st, 2012, 09:28 AM
The no discomfort is a good sign!

May 1st, 2012, 09:39 AM
I don't know a whole lot about kitties, but I have a dog who has Pica (an obesession with eating inedible objects). We didn't even realize he was eating stuff until I took my socks off one night to go to bed and he grabbed it! He was trying to eat it, so I took it away and he ran around the bed, grabbed my hubbys sock and had it halfway down his throat by the time I got to him :eek: :eek:

I won't go in to all the details (I have a few posts though from about a year and a half ago), but the stuff in his tummy rattled around there for over a month. He was having so many tummy troubles (but he was also on prednisone and azathioprine, which can cause that). We had several sets of x-rays, they couldn't see anything at all. We left him for a full day and they did a Barium swallow and an ultra-sound. When hubby picked him up, they said they didn't see anything in there that they would "hang their hats on". We got home that night and took him out for a poo. He started hunching, then freaked out and starting spinning in circles with something hanging out. It looked like a branch! I had to help him and boy was I SHOCKED... it was a full, intact rope chew toy, the kind with tassles and knots on each end :eek: :eek:, and it was covered in barium :yuck:
The next night he pooped out a sock, then the next night, another 2 socks!
A little over a month later, he pooped out 2 stuffed toys he had gotten at daycare. And he hadn't been to that daycare in 5-6 weeks. They were told NO toys for him, but they obviously didn't listen (or care) :frustrated::rolleyes:

So x-rays may not see it, especially since it's cloth covered and so small. And it can take weeks to come out. Hope the "out"come for your little guy is ok!! :)

May 3rd, 2012, 04:55 AM

Perhaps an echography of the stomach/digestive tract would be better than x-rays?

Could they see more stuff that was ingested with an echography than with an x-ray???

I just really want to make sure Gino dosn't have more stuff in his insides than I know about, and if he does, well I would want to have it removed...
He is due for his vet visit in August...

Anyone with some further advice?


May 3rd, 2012, 03:35 PM
In less he is in distress, I would take the wait and see approach. If he is eating, drinking and doing all the normal things, I wouldn't worry too much about it. (easier said then done, I know!) Even with an x-ray, its hard to see those kind of things. If he has done a bm in 48hrs, I wouldn't worry about a blockage, you'd have seen signs now, like not keeping his food down, or throwing up water/food right after drinking/eating. As you said, he might not have even eaten it. I'd keep a close eye but would wait for a trip to the vet, its very stressful on them. Not sure what to do with cats, but my dog once ate something he should not have and I sprinkled a teaspoon of Metamucil on a wet piece of bread and fed it to my dog. It works as a laxative but also if there is an object or something sharp the bread will wrap around it and guide it out. I guess if your cat eats anything he would eat bread? Not a whole piece for a cat maybe half and a sprinkle of Metamucil. Always check with your vet first before giving anything. good luck :)

May 3rd, 2012, 04:22 PM
If he's doing fine, eating, pooping/peeing, and being his usual self just keep an eye on him. I know perfectly how you feel but stay calm and just monitor him as you've been doing until now.
One of my cats now living with my parents (Kotesu also known as Koten) you won't believe what he ate...
At the beginning I didn't know but then I noticed he vomited a piece of the snake... He wasn't in serious pain or distress (he's a really tough muscular black domestic short hair baby♥) he was still a kitten back them and so crazy that while playing with the snake he actually ATE almost all of it.
In the end he expelled all of it by himself in puking episodes... Poor baby and visits to the vet to check for any remains and even then, they failed to find the last piece of rubber snake which he puked a day later.
He's now a big, strong fur baby and it all ended well. But OMG I was so worried. Crazy kittehs

P.S. Gino will be fine. You'll see :)

May 7th, 2012, 12:44 AM
Thank you all so much for your support!

I guess it feels a bit better knowing so many people have cats and dogs who `eat stuff they shouldn't...

Gino is doing just fine and no sign of the elastic...

I will keep you posted on the situation if anything new comes out!