A CAT lover was ‘devastated’ at the realisation that two of her pets had been shot with air pellets.
Carol Bamforth lives with her husband Neil and their cats, Billy and Gracie May, in Hayes End.
The Bamforths have owned cats for many years and also foster them for the Hillingdon branch of Cats Protection.
When they found one-year-old Billy limping and wounded, they took him to the vet, where an X-ray showed an air rifle pellet lodged in a leg muscle, which needed to be removed surgically.
Mrs Bamforth later noticed Gracie May licking an apparently healing wound, and went back to the vet, who confirmed that Gracie May had also been shot, in the chest and in the right hip.
The Bamforths, whose address has not been made public, have reported both incidents to the police.
Mrs Bamforth said: “I’d initially assumed they’d been caught up in a fight or injured themselves in some way. How wrong I was. It was devastating to realise they’d been shot and had been in great discomfort.
“Fortunately they are both now recovering but I urge all animal owners to keep a very close eye on their pets. If you notice a change in their behaviour, if they’re hiding themselves away, or if you notice a wet patch on their fur, please check for any sign of injury.”
Hazel Lee, the vet who operated on Billy at Goddard Veterinary Group in Derwent Drive, Hayes End after the incident last month, said: “It’s very saddening that some people choose to deliberately harm animals in this way. It causes great suffering and can potentially cause fatal injury.
“Billy and Gracie May are lucky to have survived.”