A mysterious ‘Cotswold cat shaver’ who left around a dozen cats without fur is feared to have returned – after a two-year break.
Madi Rhys-Davies says her cat Tabby returned home with a shaved leg and stomach after going missing for 24 hours.
The 11-year-old rescue cat disappeared into a wooded area close to her home in Nailsworth, Glos.
The former stray appeared nervous and aggressive after returning home – and Madi discovered patches on her foreleg and stomach.
The RSPCA launched an investigation two years ago after the phantom shaver struck at least 12 times within a six-mile radius in the Cotswolds.
Some cats had fur removed four times after being repeatedly grabbed, leaving them with random bald patches, cuts and scratches.
Neighbours Mandy Felton and John Kerry, who live in Minchinhampton, Glos., had their pet cats Beau and Treacle targeted eight times in total
Madi, said: “On her stomach it looks more like clippers than overgrooming.
“Tabby came home last week with what looks like a shaved leg and stomach. She’s an ex-rescue cat who used to be very skittish and nervous.
“We rescued her 18 months ago and we were really making improvements with her. Now we are back to square one, with her attacking everyone.
“She’s a lot more nervous now. Within the last few months she had started to let us play with her and became cuddly.”
But Emma Green, manager at Companion Care Vets in Gloucester, believes Tabby “overgroomed”.
Emma said: “In my opinion, that cat has overgroomed rather than been shaved”, she said.
“Obviously having not actually seen the cat in person it is very difficult to say for sure.
“But the leg patch isn’t where we would shave for an IV. It’s on the wrong side of the leg.
“There is still hair in the bald spot, just much thinner. Clippers would remove all of the hair.
“In my honest and professional opinion, as a qualified vet nurse of almost 15 years, this looks like over grooming rather than shaving.”
Beth Skillings, a clinical veterinary officer for national charity Cats Protection said: “It’s very disturbing to hear of the plight of these cats.
“Clipping a cat’s hair is occasionally necessary for medical reasons, but it is hard to fathom why anyone would do this if it wasn’t necessary.”