Much like children, pets must be monitored at all times. This is especially true when it comes to behaviours such as ingesting harmful objects or substances. In an example of how the lack of supervision over such actions can result in fatal outcomes, doctors at a US animal shelter removed nearly 40 hair ties from a cat's stomach. Sadly, the feline succumbed to her ordeal. 

Veterinarians at the Charleston Animal Society, South Carolina were shocked to find 38 hair ties in the feline's stomach after operating on her for the removal of a blockage in her intestines. The bizarre discovery was made after the cat, Juliet, had stopped eating and was examined for diagnosing the cause of her rejecting food.  She had been brought to the animal shelter after being abandoned by her family. 

"Our expert veterinarians and lifesaving team perform what we think are miracles every single day. Unfortunately, even with the best care, not every animal makes it. Even though Juliet was loved and was not suffering during her last days, she did succumb to this tragic accident. We are all heartbroken," said the shelter in a statement. 

Loss of Appetite, Energy

Juliet after undergoing surgeryCharleston Animal Society

Juliet, along with two other cats, arrived at the Charleston Animal Society after being rescued by a good Samaritan. According to the rescuer, the three cats had been found outside a home after being left behind by their family who had moved to a different state.

Initially, Juliet seemed to be in good health. However, she began avoiding food after a few weeks and became lethargic. When she was made to undergo radiography, doctors learnt that there was an odd blockage in her stomach. They declared that the immediate removal of the obstruction was necessary for saving her life.

An Unexpected Finding

Hair ties
The 38 hair ties found in Juliet's stomachCharleston Animal Society

Upon conducting the crucial surgery, doctors made a startling discovery: the dense lump blocking the feline's stomach was in fact a bundle of strings. The number of strings appeared to be endless as the removal of one led to the finding of the next. "I've never seen anything like it," expressed Dr. Leigh Jamison, Associate Director of Veterinary Care at Charleston Animal Society.

After removing all the strings, the surgery team counted over three dozen hair ties. The accumulation of the ingested hair ties had caused Juliet to stop eating food or processing it. Her intestines did not suffer any damage.

However, the blockage had led to the buildup of fat in Juliet's liver– a condition that was affecting her health adversely. She was undergoing treatment for it. "We have to make sure that as we feed her, we keep her electrolytes in balance," said Dr. Jamison. Unfortunately, only a few hours after reporting that Juliet's surgery had been successful, the shelter announced on its Facebook page that she had succumbed to the trauma that her body had undergone.