Owner 'shattered' after cat is shot with air gun

July 24 2022
Owner 'shattered' after cat is shot with air gun

A CAT owner who has seen two pets shot and a third poisoned is appealing for help to find the culprits.

Jo Hughes is also calling on anyone who does not like cats in their gardens to use more humane methods of keeping them away.

Police are investigating the latest attack, in which Jo's seven-year-old cat Sparky was shot sometime before 6am on July 20.

The pellet is lodged near his spine and cannot be removed. He was examined and x-rayed by a vet, who also found internal bruising and bleeding.

Sparky's treatment has cost more than £1,500 so far.

It is the second time one of Jo's cats has been shot: Sparky's brother Coal was shot in the leg four years ago.

And in October last year another cat, Candy, was poisoned, suffering organ failure which meant she had to be put to sleep. She was less than a year old.

The attacks have left Jo, a finance manager, "shattered" and her 13-year-old son Ollie very upset.

She said: "I can't even put it into words – I just don't like human beings any more."

All three of the cats – and Candy's sister, Floss – are former feral cats who have been rehomed.

Jo believes whoever is responsible probably lives close to her home in Field View Drive, Downend, which is off Frenchay Road, between Lincombe Barn and Oldbury Court.

She says an air rifle was heard going off nearby when police visited to investigate the previous shooting.

Jo said: "I'm hoping it's not a gang of teenagers who are going out shooting things – it's probably someone who doesn't like cats in their garden, who doesn't realise the damage they are causing.

"My concern is that other cats are being injured too, because surely it can’t just be one family of cats being hurt. 

"I don't have any enemies, so it's not somebody targeting me.

"I do understand that cats can be a pain if they come into your garden and you don’t want them, but squirt water at them with a hosepipe or water pistol, or put citrus down.

"Don’t hurt them – you don't realise how much damage you are causing."

An x-ray shows where the pellet has lodged

An Avon & Somerset police spokesperson said Sparky had been shot "at close range with an air weapon".

The spokesperson added: "Officers are investigating the incident and are appealing for witnesses who may have seen or heard anything to come forward.

"The neighbourhood team are not aware of any other similar incidents in recent months."

Anyone with information should call 101 and quote the crime reference number 5222 173 029.