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Last Updated: Monday, 18 June 2007, 10:22 GMT 11:22 UK
RSPCA on offensive over air guns
Pellet in cat's spine
A cat had to be put down after a pellet lodged in its spine
An increase in air gun attacks on animals has prompted the RSPCA to urge people to report gun incidents.

Last year the charity received 90 calls to air gun incidents in the West Midlands - including 33 involving shot cats and 37 concerning injured birds.

Supt Martyn Hubbard said: "Our figures only provide a snapshot of this issue as many more animals crawl away to die in agony from their injuries.

"Sadly not all incidents are reported to us or witnessed."

He added: "We are appealing to the public to help prevent unnecessary suffering to countless animals by reporting any witnessed incidents to us or the police."

Paralysed

Mr Hubbard appealed to parents not to buy their children air weapons unless they would be used under supervision.

A recent victim of a fatal air gun attack was two-year-old cat Tigger, who was shot in Willenhall in the Black Country in May.

The animal had to be put down after an air gun pellet lodged in its spine, paralysing it.

Local vet Julie Winfield, who treated Tigger, said: "It is sickening to see this kind of cruelty to cats but sadly this sort of case is far from uncommon.

"We have had several cats brought into the practice over the past 12 months suffering from air gun injuries."




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SEE ALSO
Police warning over air weapons
30 May 07 |  Nottinghamshire
Cat shooting was a 'cowardly' act
18 May 07 |  Somerset

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