Curious Comet needed CPR after getting stuck in the washing machine

A kitten was brought back from the dead after taking a soapy spin in a washing machine.

Five-month-old Comet crept into the drum and curled up inside clothes in the hope of getting a good night’s sleep. But tragedy almost struck when owner Naomi Thompson, 44, from Gillingham, Kent, got up to do an early morning wash and accidentally shut the door on him.

She only realised her mistake when she heard loud miaowing coming from the spinning machine.

Thankfully, both Naomi and her husband Perry were quick on the scene and Perry gave Comet CPR before rushing him to the Vets Now pet emergency service in the town where he received one-to-one care.

“Naomi just closed the door and put the wash on without thinking there could possibly be anything wrong,” said Perry, 43.

“Minutes later she heard the miaowing. She was horrified when she realised it was actually coming from the washing machine. The door was locked but she found the strength to rip it off.”

Perry was woken by Naomi’s desperate screams around 4am on July 22 and he rushed downstairs, fearing someone was trying to break into the house.

“She said Comet was in the washing machine but I couldn’t see anything,” said dad-of-three Perry. “I put my hand into the water and felt his tail in among the clothes right at the bottom of the big drum.

“He wasn’t breathing and his eyes were wide open. I honestly thought he was gone.

“Just at that moment, though, he twitched. I put him on the kitchen floor and started doing CPR. It was the only thing l could think of to try to bring him back to life.

“I was pumping his chest and breathing into his mouth and, thankfully, he came round.”

The cat-loving couple, who have two other kittens, Cocoa and Gizmo, who they picked up when they went to choose Comet, still feared the worst.

Perry phoned Vets Now in Gillingham, before wrapping Comet in a towel and rushing him to their clinic.

“Comet was in a pretty bad way when he came in,” said our vet nurse Victoria. “He was disoriented and wheezing, so we put him straight into an oxygen tent and vet Nuria gave him fluid therapy.

“We were concerned about pneumonia, but thankfully the ultrasound scan showed there was no fluid on the lungs or in his abdomen. The other diagnostic tests we did, however, did show issues with his breathing and an electrolyte imbalance, which we treated.”

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Comet and Charlotte

  1. Happy at home

    Charlotte, who’s seven, is especially close to Comet and she wrote her own thank you note and drew a picture for our vet and vet nurse for saving him

    Image of cat who got stuck in a washing machine for Vets Now
  2. Happy at home

    Charlotte, who’s seven, is especially close to Comet and she wrote her own thank you note and drew a picture for our vet and vet nurse for saving him

    Thank you card to Vets Now
  3. Happy at home

    Charlotte, who’s seven, is especially close to Comet and she wrote her own thank you note and drew a picture for our vet and vet nurse for saving him

  4. Happy at home

    Charlotte, who’s seven, is especially close to Comet and she wrote her own thank you note and drew a picture for our vet and vet nurse for saving him

Comet was kept under close observation — and on oxygen — for the remainder of the night and the following day.

But his condition improved markedly so that evening he was given the green light to go home, much to the delight of the Thompson family.

“I still feared the worst and I dreaded having to call home and tell Naomi and the girls that he’d died,” said Perry. “But the staff were magnificent and when I was allowed in to see him in his little tent he started purring and I knew that was a good sign.

“We are so grateful that Vets Now were there in the middle of the night when we needed them.

“Comet is so loved and we couldn’t bear to lose him. My daughter Charlotte, who’s seven, is especially close to him and she wrote her own little thank you note and picture to the vets for helping bring him back to us. I think that’s really lovely.”

Of their three kittens, Comet is the most curious and the family now always keep the washing machine door shut and double-check before switching it on.

“He is totally back to his old self and just as adventurous as ever,” added Perry.

The pet emergency service in Gillingham is one of a nationwide network of Vets Now clinics and hospitals which are open through the night, seven days a week, and day and night at weekends and bank holidays.

All of Vets Now’s premises have a vet and a veterinary nurse on-site at all times.

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