An appeal for information has been made by police after a pet cat was shot in the face with an airgun near a housing estate last week.
And the animal’s owner says it is sheer luck that the beloved pet wasn’t killed, and warned that it could easily have been a child that was hit.
Stewart Danskin (46), of Barnton Road, said the family pet Milo, a six-year-old black and white tom cat had returned home last Wednesday morning with a wound on his face, just below his eye.
“I thought he had caught his face on a fence or something, so I bathed it with salt water and put on antiseptic cream,” he said.
“We kept an eye on the wound then when I was cleaning it again on Monday I saw something glinting and realised it was a bit of metal. I got a pair of tweezers and managed to pull it out while my wife held the cat.
“We were completely shocked to discover that it was an airgun pellet. It had obviously been well embedded in his face as we hadn’t seen it until it started to heal and was pushed to the surface.
“I can’t believe that someone has obviously been taking pot shots with an airgun in an area which is used by youngsters playing.
“Milo spends his time in the field between our house and Sainsbury’s, so we can only assume that’s where this happened. He goes out at night and comes back in the morning. He could easily have lost an eye or even been killed by this mindless act.
“He is a very tame cat and would go to anyone, and although this doesn’t seem to have made him any less trusting, he must have been in a lot of pain.
“The pellet had a pointed end, so it went in quite deep and that’s why we didn’t see it.
“I have three daughters and they are all really upset at this happening to their beloved pet. The police have been in touch and we hope whoever did this is caught as soon as possible.”
Sergeant Jimmy Adamson said: “Anyone with information which could help is asked to come forward. However, I want to reassure the community that at this time we’ve received no other reports of animals being injured by air weapons.”
In August 2015 the Air Weapons and Licensing (Scotland) Act 2015 received Royal approval. It sets out a robust licensing regime for air weapons, developed in consultation with Police Scotland. The new law will make it a criminal offence to have an air weapon without a licence from 31 December, and anyone found guilty could face a fine or up to two years in prison. Anyone not wishing to take on a licence can hand air rifles in to their local police station.