'Mum's just washed the cat': Kitten survives full cycle

MICHELLE COOKE
Last updated 14:46 01/10/2012

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A Gisborne kitten went for the ride of its life when it went through a full 55-minute washing cycle and survived.

Adele Law put dirty clothes and washing powder into the machine, had a shower and then returned to put more clothes in before closing the lid and turning it on.

Completely unaware, her 6-month-old kitten Possum had climbed inside and was rotated and drenched alongside the clothes for the entire 55-minute cycle.

Meanwhile, Law dried her hair, heard a squeaking noise but thought it was just the machine's piping, and dropped one of her sons off at work.

"Someone said to me 'when you heard the noise why didn't you check to see if the cat was in the machine', but how many times do you check to see if the cat is in your washing machine?"

However, Law did check to see whether the fluffy grey cat was in the washing machine when she returned home 20 minutes later to "the most horrendous sound".

"I realised the noise was coming from the washing machine and I just could not believe it," the mother of two said.

"I opened the door and it was the most horrible sight.

"She's really fluffy, but she just looked like a rat, twisted and flattened."

Not knowing what to do, Law closed the washing machine door, with the cat still inside.

"I told my son 'mum's just washed the cat'."

She then called her partner, who asked how the cat was.

"I said 'I don't know, she's still inside. I managed to pull myself together and go into the laundry and get her out. It was just disgusting."

Law rushed the cat to the vet, raced up to the reception and told them she'd just washed the cat.

"I said 'I've got a problem, I just put the cat through the washing machine. No one could believe she had gone through a 55-minute cycle.

"I think they thought I'd gone nuts."

The vets had never heard of a cat surviving a washing cycle and said she probably wouldn't have if it was not a cold wash. The machine also didn't have an agitator, the component inside which helps the spinning process.

Law suspects Possum jumped on top of the washing machine to get away from the dog, before crawling inside of the top-loader.

The ordeal happened in late August. Possum returned home after spending a couple of days in the vet's care.

It took her a week before she returned to her pre-wash condition, but now appears to be more affectionate, Law said. "Even to me."

Law's seven-year-old son took Possum to school last week to show his classmates, while explaining what happened.

"The class was very confused," Law said.

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