Cat gets stuck in washing machine for 35-minute cycle

MINNESOTA -- A cat in Minnesota is recovering after he got stuck in his family's washing machine for a 35-minute cycle.

Before doing a load of laundry, Stefani Carroll-Kirchoff told CNN she usually checks the washer and dryer to make sure none of her three cats have climbed inside.

But that wasn't the case last week. Carroll-Kirchoff said she walked away to get more clothes, threw them in the machine and shut the door.

After the cycle was done, she noticed the clothes were still dripping wet.

She said she was about to shut the door again when she saw the paw of her 1-year-old cat, Felix.

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Somehow, Felix found his way into the machine without her noticing.

Carroll-Kirchoff called her father and the pair took him to the Animal Emergency and Referral Center of Minnesota.

A veterinarian determined Felix had lost his vision and had pneumonia from the amount of water in his lungs.

After some time at the vet, Felix started to recover. He can see again and has started eating; however, he's still on oxygen.

While his vet said he'll fully recover, Carroll-Kirchoff said she'll never forgive herself.

"I've been in shock the last few days," she said. "I mean, this is going to haunt me for the rest of my life."

Carroll-Kirchoff's daughter, Asha Carroll McCullough, set up a GoFundMe to help with his growing medical bills.

It raised more than $10,000 in four days.

"To those of you with cats, please always close your washing machine and dryer doors in between washes, and always check your washing machine and dryer doors prior to beginning a wash," McCullough wrote on the GoFundMe. "You can prevent an accident like this from happening."
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