Kitten survives washing machine spin cycle
A kitten called Scampi was close to drowning after he climbed into a washing machine moments before it was put on a spin cycle.The inquisitive eight-week old ginger and white cat hopped into the washing machine when his owner Frances Leate, 29, left the room to collect some laundry.
Frances, of Colchester, Essex placed more clothes into the drum and switched the load on for a 40-degree wash.
The mum-of-one was texting friends when she suddenly realised Scampi was not about and a "feeling in the pit of her stomach" told her that the tiny terror in the wash.
She rushed into her kitchen to be confronted with the awful sight of the the washing machine filling with water before starting to spin.
The hysterical mum switched the machine off but the water remained in the drum and she watched her beloved kitten "drowning" in front of her because the automatic lock initially prevented her from opening the door.
Frances dashed outside and frantically knocked on her neighbour Pam Morris' door and the pair finally managed to pull the sodden and lifeless moggy from the machine.
Frances said: "I could see his little body squashed up against the glass.
"He was looking out at me and it was just awful - I could see that he was drowning and I was desperately trying to get the door open.
"I completely and utterly panicked and was thinking whether to phone the police or the fire brigade but rushed out of my flat to get help."
The freelance writer picked up her bedraggled and lifeless pet and was initially convinced he was dead.
But when she realised Scampi was still breathing she rushed to her car and drove him to her local vets.
She was told the little kitten had a large amount of water on his lungs and was lucky to be alive.
After a night at the vets and a course of antibiotics, the tiny tearaway is back at home and has even been jumping BACK into the washing machine.
Frances said: "My daughter, Tabetha, has been giving him lots of extra cuddles since it happened but he really has no idea of what he put us through.
"It is as if he is as good as new but now I am worried about him falling down the toilet - I am a neurotic mother to him now.
"He is completely back to normal and is an amazing little bundle of energy again.
"The vets were amazed - he is just so lucky because his little body was filled with water.
"But I will just never forget that image of his helpless little face staring out at me from the machine - I really thought he was going to die - it was heartbreaking as he started going under the water
"I think just a minute longer and that would have been it - he had been in there for about 10 minutes when we finally opened the door."
It has been a dramatic first eight weeks of life for Scampi after he was found abandoned as a tiny kitten in a box in the street along with his five brothers and sisters.
The kittens were taken into a cat rescue home before Scampi went to live with Frances, her 11-year-old daughter and their seven-year-old cat, Tiger.