Pet owners, steel yourselves for some serious anxiety dream fuel. Vets4Pets, a veterinary service from the UK, have reported that a very poorly ferret recently attended one of their clinics in Leeds after sneaking into the washing machine when nobody was looking. The unlucky mustelid named Bandit endured a 100-minute-long washing machine cycle before he was discovered.
The veterinary team that tended to Bandit predicted he had just a 1 percent chance of survival after the traumatic spin in the machine caused him to suffer a collapsed lung and significant bruising. According to a report from the BBC, veterinary surgeon David Massey who treated the two-year-old ferret said he was in a "pretty bad way when he came in. The team here got to work quickly to try and save his life.”
While Bandit’s outlook seemed bleak when he first arrived at the clinic, four hours later he was taking his first cautionary steps. The incredible turn around reassured the team at the veterinary surgery that luck was perhaps on Bandit’s side after all.
Back at home, as Covid has resulted in an animals-only protocol for veterinary patients during the ongoing lockdown, owner Jackie Redfern waited anxiously for a call, fearing the worst for her ferret. Bandit is one of two brothers who share Redfern’s Leeds home, and his sibling Mikey was said to also have suffered from his absence. Fortunately, it would be a happy ending for Bandit’s traumatic misadventure, and he was soon returned home where brother Mikey resumed a firm position by his side.
Pet owners will likely sympathize with Bandit’s story, as unfortunately some of the most common household pets have a penchant for climbing into small cozy spaces. Massey expressed that other pet owners should be mindful that the same could happen to them, "While this situation is thankfully extremely rare, washing machines and tumble dryers can often be a place our furry friends can seek out, particularly during colder weather when they might be looking for a cozy place to curl up."
The “if I fits, I sits” policy seems to be a particularly popular one among domesticated cats. It could be that small, clothes-lined spaces offer a warmer environment as the thermoneutral zone for domestic cats is 30-38°C (86-100.4°F), which for some parts of the planet is likely slightly higher than your thermostat at home. Furthermore, a 2014 study found that cats who were gifted a cardboard box were able to acclimatize to a new environment considerably faster than those who weren’t.
So be vigilant, floof owners. Our heckin’ good boys and girls may be adorable, but they don’t always mix well with home appliances.