A FAMILY in Bedlington are warning other pet owners to think twice about letting their animals outside after their cat was shot in the face with an air rifle.
Two-year-old Tommi was left in agony after a pellet fired from an air rifle lodged itself in his jaw.
Now the tabby has been left blind in his right eye, which could be removed if his sight does not return after the bruising goes down.
Owner Nichola Hood, of Knaresborough Close, woke to find Tommi covered in blood in the morning of Saturday, June 18.
Nichola’s 14-year-old son Bradley raised the alarm after he returned home from his paper round and found the pet lying injured at the bottom of the stairs.
The 44-year-old mum of two said: “I got out of bed, and I was confronted with Tommi’s eye pouring with blood.
“I was in shock. I couldn’t believe what I saw.
“Tommi is so friendly and loving. He would’ve just went up to someone and they did this to him.”
Nichola, a pastoral assistant at Cramlington Learning Village, is now warning other pet owners to beware of yobs wielding air guns.
Nichola said: “Since this happened, I’m now thinking twice about letting my cats outside again.
“We’ve seen people carrying air rifles around, and I’m presuming they’re out shooting rabbits in the nearby fields. It’s a disgrace.
“What gives people the right to shoot an innocent animal? They would not get away with it if they shot a child.
“I want people to be aware that this is happening around here.”
RSPCA inspector Trevor Walker said: “This was a dreadful incident which has caused a great deal of suffering not just to Tommi the cat, who I understand may lose his eye as a result, but also to his owners who are understandably very distressed.
“We want to hear from anyone with specific information that might help identify the person responsible.
“Anyone with any information should call the RSPCA on 0300 1234 999.”