The UK's fastest-growing regional news network
17°C | 12°C
16°C | 9°C
12°C | 5°C
See the full forecast for your area.
Sponsored by Britelite.
Home Gravesend News Article
Hugh Wood, of Struttons Avenue, Northfleet, was searching for his beloved three-year-old cat on Sunday night when he found him staggering around outside.
“He could hardly stand,” said the 69-year-old. “He had a mark on his forehead which looked like a pellet shot in his brain. He looked awful.”
Worried about the health of his pet, named Puss, he took him to the PDSA Pet Aid Hospital.
After undergoing tests, Mr Wood said he was told Puss had been shot with an airgun.
Puss has since been put down.
“It is a terrible shame,” said Mr Wood. “He was a lovely, gentle cat and was a member of the family. He was our one and only cat.
“I can’t understand why someone would be so malicious. It was awful seeing him suffering.”
His wife, Mollie, 83, has also been left devastated.
Mr Wood has reported the incident to the RSPCA in the hope of catching those responsible.
It is believed to have happened between 7.30pm and midnight on Sunday.
“I want to catch whoever is responsible,” said Mr Wood. “There is a person armed with a gun in our neighbourhood that shot a cat at point blank range.
“I went and warned all the neighbours with cats afterwards. No one saw anything happen.”
An RSPCA spokesman said: “The RSPCA is appealing for any information after a cat was shot with an airgun on Sunday. Sadly the cat died and the police are now investigating.
“In light of this callous attack, the RSPCA is reminding people of the penalties faced if caught deliberately using an airgun to injure an animal.
“Under the Animal Welfare Act, those causing unnecessary suffering to animals face a £20,000 fine and/or up to six months in prison.”
The animal charity has previously revealed the number of animals being injured by air rifles is on the rise. Almost 800 attacks were reported to the charity in 2012. And in the first six months of 2013, 438 reports were received.
The majority of the reports involved wild birds, but cats were the second most targeted animal.
Click here for more news from Gravesend.
Click here for more news from around the county.