A shocking X-ray- reveals the devastating injuries sustained by a cat which survived despite suffering 30 wounds from a shotgun – including one in her left eye.
Three-year-old Puss-Puss dragged herself home covered in blood with pellet wounds all over her body after the savage attack last week.
Her injuries were so extensive that she will have to have her eye removed due to the damage caused.
Her owner Doug Taw said: “When she came near she was dragging her leg so we thought she had been hit by a car.
“She was so petrified that she wouldn’t let us near her, she went off into the other gardens.
“I just can’t think what sort of person could have done this to her.
“We heard some gunshots but didn’t imagine at first it could have anything to do with Puss-Puss.
“Then we found her crouched under a car, frightened and injured.
“She eventually dragged herself back in a terrible state and we rushed her straight to the vet.”
Doug, who is awaiting a heart bypass operation, adopted Puss Puss when she was less than a year old after she was dumped in a neighbour’s garden, despite her being heavily pregnant.
The black-and-white moggie had been missing for a week when Doug and friend Lisa Broadway were heard close to her home in Colchester, Essex, on Friday.
She was rushed straight to Colne Valley Vets in Colchester, Essex, where X-rays were done and she was given pain relief for her injuries.
Lisa said: “She was dragging herself across the garden and to the house, you could tell she was so pleased to be home.
“Her body is riddled with pellets, it is a miracle she is still alive.
“It wasn’t a close up shot because otherwise she would be dead, but with the amount of pellets that are in her it could be intentional.”
Puss Puss will have to have her left eye removed and needs an operation to remove many of the pellets.
Mr Taw said: “It is a little frightening, she is very lucky to be alive.
“When we heard the sound we did not even associate it with her being shot.
“I am sure these idiots do not realise they are using a deadly weapon.
“It is heartbreaking seeing her in such a distressed state, and I am so upset that she will now lose her eye.
“It is a miracle she survived but it’s going to take a lot for her to get back to her normal self, and she will obviously always bear the scars now.”
The RSPCA is appealing for anyone with any information to come forward.
RSPCA inspector Adam Jones said: “We were shocked to find that Puss-Puss was peppered with such an extraordinary number of pellet wounds all over her body and head.
“One was in her paw making it hard for her to walk, and another in the middle of her eye – causing a detached retina. The vet said two had just missed her spinal cord and it is a miracle she survived.
“She would have been incredibly distressed and in a lot of pain and we want to do all we can to stop such a callous act happening again.”
Westley Pearson from pet insurance company Animal Friends said: “What is most upsetting about this story is that it isn’t an isolated incident.
“Puss-Puss is lucky to have survived such gruelling injuries, and we wish her and her family the best in her ongoing recovery.”