Categories: foreign object

Cat belonging to deployed U.S. veteran seriously injured after swallowing a fishing hook

This article is my latest in what I call my “freak accident” series. We all know cats can get themselves into all kinds of trouble, and Tamarindo is no exception. Curiosity almost killed the cat when Tamarindo tangled with a fishing hook and line and lost. His story was recently posted on a GoFundMe webpage started by Sherry Christy, whose son is deployed overseas and can’t be with his injured kitty at this time.

Tamarindo in happier days

“Hi everyone, my son, Nathan is deployed overseas.  I’m the grand mom of his kitties and I have been taking care of them since he left.  Their names are Tamarindo and Arianna.

We are asking for help for an emergency we had with Tamarindo.  He is a very inquisitive little guy.  My grand daughter left her fishing pole in the dining room.  Tamarindo knocked over the pole and unknown to us managed to get the hook and line off the pole.  The next morning when we woke up I found Tamarindo vomiting and saw the hook and line.

He was not feeling well at all. My husband and I rushed him to the Mount Laurel Animal hospital and he was seen and diagnosed with a torn esophagus.  They felt it would be better to transfer Tamarindo to the University of Penn Animal Hospital for emergency chest surgery.  Before the Emergency team was called in we had to pay half the estimated bill for the surgery.  It was estimated 6000-7000 thousand so we had to pay 3500.00.   Plus we had to pay 647.00 at the first hospital.  Attached are receipts for you to view.

Tamarindo had surgery Saturday pm.  He had a thoracotomy (open chest)  They repaired the hole in his esophagus.  He was then transferred to ICU.  He Is currently still there and has a chest tube, feeding tube and IV’s.  He is getting IV pain medications continuously and antibiotics along with oxygen.  Pictures of our little love bug after surgery are also attached.”

One of Tamarindo’s receipts

The balance of Tamarindo’s estimate must be paid before this curious kitty is released from the vet. The money will go directly to the University of Penn for the remainder of the bill first and if enough is raised they can pay off the amount placed on the credit card to get him out. All of the veterinary receipts are posted on the GoFundMe webpage here.  Please feel free to donate or subscribe to updates on Tamarindo’s condition.

The grand total of this freak accident is estimated as high as $7,000.

Thanks go out to Helen Grant, who works with retired Military Working Dogs, for sending me this story. Helen and Sherry are friends and I trust her on this being a legitimate injury.


Please take the time and click here for all of my articles about pet dangers. The lesson to learn in this story is accidents DO happen, no matter how careful you are. Treat your home as if you have a two-year-old curious toddler roaming the home and searching for things to get into.

Please comment here using either Facebook or WordPress (when available).
Elisa Black-Taylor

Elisa is an experienced cat caretaker and rescuer. She lives in the US. As well as being a professional photographer, Elisa has been a regular contributor to PoC for nine years. See her Facebook page.

View Comments

  • Terribly sad and how strange but well done the owners for acting so positively and getting it fixed. Do we know how he swallowed something so damaging? I presumed he swallowed it or tried to. Great story Elisa but Wow that would scare me to death if my cat did it. I guess there is a moral here. There are hidden dangers in the home.

  • he is now HOME and doing good, feeding tube still in but he is home and thats what counts, thank to those who commented caring about him, i will not tolerate any nastys

  • this is helen, i helped sherry put together the fundraiser, and yes it is legit, iam from the mwdog world and have done enough adivising on fundraisers and yes i cked it out, and sadly vet hospitals do cost lots of monry, example, i have helped many mwd, cwd, sar and police k9s with cancer, and the treatment can be as high as 10,000. these herso have no nothing after they retire as well as our pets, on the fundraiser it shows they have care credit which also was used, any questions please pm me and i will help explain more, thank

  • Well, I guess my next article needs to be "how much would you spend to save your cat" since people are bashing the caregiver for agreeing to these charges. How much is too much? $500? $1,000? $5,000? I know people in rescue who have spent $10,000 or more to save a cat. Or is it based on how much the family can afford? It would make an interesting article...

    And please realize you don't have to donate unless you wish to. I did this article to show the danger and to show just how expensive a freak accident can become to save the cat.

    • I've seen higher charges for panleukopenia for a litter of kittens. Guess that's how they pay off those fancy diagnostic machines. It is shameful.

  • You are so right, Elisa. Cats and toddlers are both curious and will put nearly anything in their mouths. The best we can do is to put away potentially harmful items and be as vigilant as we can. But, sometimes, accidents happen. If there's the smallest thread or tack wedged in a carpet, you can bet that it will be found.
    I hope that the $$ will be raised for Tamarindo and he can go back home.

    • Poor little guy looks miserable. I'm in daily contact with Helen so I'll be able to get frequent updates. From what I understand the remainder of the bill will be put on their credit card, but we all know how high-interest rates can jack up the bill. I try to do as many freak accident articles as I come across because people tend to read them.

      • And, this is no scam. These people need genuine help. You and I know that the credit card way is a last resort and may cripple these poor people financially.
        It scares the hell out of me, ie. happy and healthy cat yesterday, critical today.

        Thank you for publishing this. I'm spreading it around.

        • Dee, what are emergency vet prices in your area? Do you have any idea? I'm wondering whether they're this expensive across the country.

          • The cost is out of this world.
            We're very vulnerable because we aren't given a clue as to how much anything may cost like x-rays, ultrasounds, etc. much less surgeries.

            It seems that clinics just pull numbers out of the sky. There's a real need for a "big brother" overseeing costs and preventing us from being gouged.

            I've paid more for labs and meds for my cats than I have for my own identical ones. Even my cats' dental care is more than mine.

            Many caretakers neglect their own health in order to better afford pet care.

          • They are that expensive trust me my Labrador asperaTed a piece of wood and ended up with a pyotorax 4 days in icu 1000 a day surgery to open his chest 8 weeks of antibiotics grand total 21000

        • He got his chest tube out today and if he does OK overnight he'll be moved out of ICU tomorrow.

Recent Posts

A nursing mother’s nipples are labelled like school lockers for her kittens

The language I've used in the title comes from that wonderful writer, Desmond Morris. He…

1 hour ago

Young man in an apartment in Spain rescued two cats and had 96 three years later

A young man has been evicted from his 1,000 square-foot apartment in the seaside town…

2 hours ago

Free credit to help pay your veterinary bill

A little while ago I wrote about the choice between taking out an pet health…

3 hours ago

Animal rescue crew search around burnt out homes and discover a surviving cat

CALIFORNIA WILDFIRES 15 SEPT 2020 - CHICO: Cat lovers will be pleased to know that…

1 day ago

Another nail in the coffin of free-roaming domestic cats?

NEWS AND ANALYSIS: if you read the online news media on the subject of cats…

1 day ago

Should I get a covered litter box?

The general consensus is that you should not get a covered litter box. Although I…

2 days ago