This is one of the worst, if not the worst cat cruelty case I have heard about and it also tells us a bit about the veterinary business as well or at least the vets in the country where it happened. And you guessed, it happened in that land where the feral cat is maligned and ill treated, shot at on sight under government authority, yes, Australia. (Click on this link if you would like to see lots of links to the shooting of cats).
The town: Melbourne. The case concerns an ordinary domestic cat, a companion cat called Possum, who was trapped in a cage laid down by a person. This cat has an “owner” so clearly the person doing the trapping has acted irresponsibly in placing traps in an area where cats, with homes, can be caught. OK it may be acceptable to trap feral cats provided it is done with care and the people in the area know about it and are warned etc.. And further the trapping is done for the purpose of the Trap, Neuter and Return process, the best and currently only way we know to control feral cats. But in this instance, once Possum was trapped, he was shot at point blank range around the head and neck area with an air gun, 27 times, and he survived.
It happened, apparently at 9pm on February 27, 2009. The owner having found him, pulled out some pellets and the remainder were removed by a vet. Only the owner was turned down by 4 vets before she found one who would do the work. I am not sure why they turned her away. The cat had survived and could have been saved. Perhaps the owner didn’t have enough money. Or the vets didn’t care enough.
Perhaps the airgun was defective. Perhaps the person who pulled the trigger was defective (nah, he was definitely defective). The person who did this is a criminal under the Australian animal welfare laws. He should be punished if caught. It would be described as “Aggravated Cruelty” and if successfully convicted under section 10 of the PREVENTION OF CRUELTY TO ANIMALS ACT 1986 (as amended), the penalty is 2 years imprisonment or 240 penalty units. But will he get caught in a country where they are paranoic about the feral cat? No, not in my opinion, anyway. Not even for the worst cat cruelty.