Categories: RSPCA

Picture of elderly cat with leg stuck in washing machine door begs the question: How?

The RSPCA reveals its most interesting and let’s say bizarre animal rescues for 2019. There is one cat in the list and it does indeed looks strange because they don’t explain how this elderly cat living in the Midlands of the UK managed to get, what looks like, one of his hind legs stuck in the door of a washing machine. I’d like to speculate as to how it happened.

And perhaps more importantly why the cat could not be released by opening the door.

Picture by the RSPCA of cat who get her leg stuck in a washing machine door.

The picture shows what I believe is the cat’s owner holding the cat on her lap to support her cat while waiting for the RSPCA to arrive. The washing machine door looks closed.

My analysis is as follows. It looks to me that the stuck leg is a hind leg but it is not clear. It’s length indicates a hind leg.

On the basis that it is a hind leg (far more likely), the cat may have jumped up onto the washing machine. Cats use their hind legs to assist in jumping onto surfaces by pushing off on the side of the object they are jumping onto. In this instance the left hind leg pushed off and slide down the washing machine to where it became jammed between the door and the machine. The cat cried out and the owner came immediately to cradle her cat as seen in the photo. She tried to release her cat and failed. She called the RSPCA for help.

My second theory depends on it being a foreleg! The cat jumps up on top of the washing machine while there is washing in it. The washing cycle had probably just stopped and the machine was warm.

The cat then decides to get down. She slides her forelegs down the side of the washing machine to shorten the distance of the jump. This is very typical of all domestic cats. One of her forelegs becomes jammed between the rim of the circular door and the body of the machine. She falls the rest of the distance and I’d guess that she has broken her leg. But that is unclear too. It is difficult to see how it could have happened in any other way.

As for the need to call the RSPCA to release the leg, I have asked them on their Facebook page how it happened and for some more details because I am surprised it was not possible to release the cat by opening the door.

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Michael Broad

Hi, I'm a 71-year-old retired solicitor (attorney in the US). Before qualifying I worked in many jobs including professional photography. I have a girlfriend, Michelle. I love nature, cats and all animals. I am concerned about their welfare.

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