A cat who suffered horrific injuries and needed to have a leg amputated is recovering after being caught in what vets believe was a snare. Two-year-old Tabitha had been missing for nearly two days when she limped home to her owner’s home in Storrington, Sussex, with appalling injuries to her rear leg.
She was rushed to Arun Veterinary Group where vets said her wounds were consistent with having been caught in a snare, probably designed to capture foxes or rabbits. Her injuries were so bad that vets had no option but to amputate her rear leg which had become badly infected.
Volunteers from Cats Protection’s Horsham and District Branch are now caring for the puss after her previous owner handed her over to the veterinary surgery to continue her care.
Anna Portnoi, co-ordinator of the branch is now caring for Tabitha while she recovers. She said: “Tabitha had been missing for nearly two days and when she returned she was in an awful state.
“Cats can get caught on barbed wire, and of course they can sustain injuries in road accidents. But this looked very much as though she had been caught in a snare. She must have been in agony, the pain really must have been immeasurable.
“Despite her ordeal, Tabitha is a lovely, confident and affectionate cat. She has adapted well to having three legs and is already well on the way to recovery.”
Cats Protection’s advocacy manager Jacqui Cuff said the charity is calling for an outright ban on snares. She said: “Snares are inherently cruel to any animal caught in them, whether they are the intended victims or not. Many animal lovers are surprised to learn that the use of such cruel devices is still legal in the UK.
“Cats and other animals caught in snares can suffer long and agonising deaths and those that do survive will frequently suffer serious injuries. Only an outright ban will prevent the horrific pain and injury snares inflict.”
Chris Pitt, deputy director of campaigns for the League Against Cruel Sports, says that all animals caught in these wire nooses suffer terribly. He said: “Tabitha’s horrific injury highlights why dog and cat owners need to be ‘snare aware’.
“Snares are indiscriminate – around 1.7m animals get caught in them every year. Although normally set to catch foxes and rabbits, two out of every three animals caught in these nooses are unintended quarry like dogs and cats.
“This is one of many snaring cases we’ve heard about recently – how many cats and dogs are being injured or even killed without anyone hearing about it?”