How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site. Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask Dr. B. Your Own Question
Dr. B.
Dr. B., Board Certified Veterinarian
Category: Vet
Satisfied Customers: 22584
Experience:  General practice veterinary surgeon with extensive experience in a wide range of species.
Type Your Vet Question Here...
Dr. B. is online now

Our cat just ate some string that I use .

This answer was rated:

Hi ,
Our cat just ate some string that I use for cooking. What should I do and will she be ok as it was about 5cm long. Unfortunately she's a skittish cat so have been unable to grab it off her in time or even catch her now. Thanks.
Hello & welcome, I am Dr. B, a licensed veterinarian & I would like to help you with your wee one today.
Unfortunately, this is a real concern.
Strings can be very dangerous for cats. This is because if allowed to remain in her stomach, we can see situations where these become damaging foreign bodies. Often the string will get stretched (or one end caught in the stomach as the other moves down the gut) and this can cause blockage as it pulls the loops of gut together or can even cheese wire through the gut to cause damage or perforation to the gut wall.
In this situation, the best option would be to catch her and get her to her vet. They can induce vomiting by using injectable apomorphine and/or use their endoscope (a scope with a camera) to remove it from her stomach and avoid any issue.
Otherwise, if that isn't an option, then we'd have to try to get her to pass it the other way while keeping a close eye on her. To do that, we can add cat hairball treatment or a GI lubricant to her food to help ease has passing this. As well, we can add some fiber (ie canned pumpkin, 0.25tsp unflavoured Benefiber added to canned food, etc) to try to bulk up her stools and keep that string from getting stuck.
Of course, if you use the latter, we need to keep a very close eye on her. Any signs of appetite loss, vomiting, straining to pass feces, pale gums, black stools, or belly pain; and we'd need her seen urgently by her vet. And if they did confirm a blockage from this, then she may even need surgery.
Overall, these situations are precarious for cats and do carry real risk. Therefore, it'd be ideal to catch her now and have her vet remove that string before it can get into her intestines. If we can do so, we can avoid any serious harm. Otherwise, we need to encourage this to keep moving while keeping a close eye on her for the next few days to make sure this causes her no issue.
Please take care,
Dr. B.
If you have any other questions, please ask me – I’ll be happy to respond. Please remember to rate my service once you have all the information you need as this is how I am credited for assisting you today. Thank you! : )
Dr. B. and other Vet Specialists are ready to help you