Kitty swallows coin that was still ‘toxic’ to his system after being surgically removed

This story is a warning about what can happen when a kitty cat swallows a coin. The information needs to be shared because coins made before 2012 in the UK can still be toxic, even if the coin is removed.

Kevin and the toxic coin (PDSA)
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Kevin is a two-year-old ginger tom who lives in Ystradgynlais, near Swansea in the UK. It’s believed he got ahold of the 2010 5p coin when his owner’s daughter was playing with her coin collection. Owners Steve and Frances Sqillim knew something was wrong when Kevin stopped eating and appeared to be in pain.

The veterinarians at Swansea PDSA Hospital took an x-ray and saw the coin on the screen. Since it was so small they were unsure whether the coin was Kevin’s only problem.

x-ray showing the coin (PDSA)

Veterinarian Lucy Knight said in an interview with

“We called veterinary poison experts at the Veterinary Poisons Information Service and explained that we’d removed a 5p coin from Kevin’s stomach. They told us that because it had been minted in 2010, the metals it contained were potentially toxic.”

Veterinary Poisons Information Service explained the metal poisoning can remain in the body for weeks and that Kevin wasn’t out of the woods yet. Coins made after 2012 are made from a different metal that isn’t as poisonous if swallowed.

The family had a talk with their child to make sure she puts all of her shiny coins in her piggy bank and doesn’t leave any out for a pet to swallow.

PDSA cautions anyone who has a cat who may have ingested anything toxic to seek immediate veterinary treatment. This isn’t the time to go on Facebook and ask friends what to do when a pets life may be in danger.

Get well wishes go out to Kevin with the hope his tummy feels better soon.

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