POLICE are hunting yobs who shot a family pet, leaving it seriously injured.
Angela Winder thought her pet Martha had been hit by a car when she found her limping towards the family home in Fatfield, Washington.
She rushed her to the vets in Concord, where an x-ray revealed the eight-year-old cat had been shot.
Martha needed emergency surgery to remove a number of pellets from her back leg at a specialist vets in Backworth, Northumberland.
They repaired her shattered thigh bone with two plates and eight screws, leaving Angela and husband Steve, of Garrigill, with a vet’s bill of more than £2,000.
The couple, who have been married for seven years, had to explain to their little boy Alex, 21 months, that his beloved moggy was poorly.
They were also forced to cancel their first family holiday to visit Sherwood Forest and stay at a cottage in Filey, so they could care for their sick pet, who needs to stay in a cage for four weeks before further X-rays are taken in six to eight weeks.
One pellet is still lodged in Martha’s abdomen.
Devastated Angela, 31, a teacher, said: “I thought she had been hit by a car, then we took her to the vet and they said she had been shot.
“We thought she was going to lose her leg at one point. I was just heartbroken.
“We were on our way out, when we found her crawling out of the bushes.
“I could have forgiven someone if it had been an accident, but you don’t want to see your pet in pain.
“She is one of the family. We have had her since she was a kitten and she never goes far.
“We got her and another cat, Jasper, at the same time. I can’t believe people would do this.”
l Comment – Page 18