Cat seriously injured after being deliberately shot in the neck in Pontefract

The RSPCA is appealing for information after a cat was left seriously injured when he was shot in the neck with an air rifle.

Wednesday, 5th May 2021, 12:49 pm
Updated Wednesday, 5th May 2021, 1:01 pm
Gordon was operated on to remove the pellet and is now, luckily, recovering at home.

Gordon was found injured by his owner Gavin Walker on land near Bracken Hill, Ackworth, on Tuesday, April 20 after he didn't return home.

Gavin, 36, and his partner Charlotte Cordon, went looking for him, which is when Charlotte heard some faint croaking noises in some undergrowth.

Not being able to see him, Gavin and Charlotte spent an hour cutting away at the thick bushes to finally get to Gordon.

When they reached him, they noticed his neck was swollen and bleeding.

Gavin rushed Gordon to a nearby vet who discovered he had been shot with an airgun.

The pellet had gone through one side of his neck and was implanted in the other side.

Gordon was operated on to remove the pellet and is now, luckily, recovering at home.

Gavin said: “It was just so shocking to find out he had been shot and it is obvious that it was a deliberate attack.

“It is awful to target an innocent animal and it does worry me that other pets in the area could be at risk such as wildlife.

“Gordon is feeling very sorry for himself and he used to love going out. He had his final vet visit on Thursday as there is still some swelling but he appears on the mend - he can feed but he has lost his meow for now.

“He really was very lucky as the pellet missed all vital areas like the windpipe and major arteries.

“I just want to warn other pet owners to be vigilant so hopefully they don’t have to go through such an upsetting ordeal and also to appeal to anyone who knows who did this to contact the RSPCA.”

Gavin, who has 10 cats, is now worried for the safety of his other pets.

RSPCA inspector John Gibson, who is investigating, said: “I believe this was a deliberate attack and am appealing for information.

“Every year the RSPCA receives almost 1,000 calls to investigate cases and help hundreds of animals that are the defenceless victims of air gun attacks.

“It is very distressing to think that people take pleasure in causing such horrific injuries to defenceless animals. These are deliberate and brutal acts of cruelty.

“Cats and wildlife are normally the animals that are more susceptible to these incidents simply because they are out in the open with no one to protect them. Unfortunately, air rifle attacks are not as rare as we would like. The injuries caused by such attacks are horrific and often fatal.

"We are supporting Cats Protection’s call for tighter controls on air weapons. This, along with better education and explanation of the law when buying an air gun, and requirements that everyone must receive basic safety training before being allowed to walk out of the shop could help relieve the problem.

“These weapons cause horrific pain and suffering and it is illegal. Anyone caught deliberately using an air gun to injure an animal can be up to six months in prison and an unlimited fine if found guilty under the Animal Welfare Act.”

Anyone who has any information about this incident should contact the RSPCA appeal line on 0300 123 8018.