A cat has had to be put to sleep after he got his face stuck in a trap in Burgh.
The RSPCA was called after the tabby male was seen by a passing motorist crossing the road in Wood Lane on Saturday (February 11) with a fenn trap caught on his head.
Two of the charity’s officers spent more than 40 minutes searching the surrounding gardens and hedges, and eventually found the adult cat in the corner of a wood store in clear distress. He was taken straight to a vet, where he was nicknamed Curiosity, and was taken into intensive care because of the extensive damage caused.
Sadly, his injury was so severe and he was suffering so much the vet made the difficult decision to put him to sleep.
Curiosity did not have a microchip and it is not known who had owned him. The RSPCA is appealing for information about where he may have come from as well as any information about who may have left this trap.
RSPCA inspector Dean Astillberry said: “This poor cat had somehow got his head completely stuck, face-down, in this lethal trap. We don’t know how long he would have been wandering about like that. His face was swollen out of all proportion. He could not open his eyes at all, and his mouth just a small distance.
“His claws were completely worn away from trying to escape – it must have been so distressing and painful for him to be trapped in this painful way.”
A fenn trap is a spring trap commonly used for trapping wildlife such as grey squirrels, stoats, rats and mice. Killing or injuring a domestic, non-target animal with a fenn trap is an offence and the RSPCA is opposed to the manufacture, sale and use of all snares and any trap which causes suffering.
Llewelyn Lowen, scientific officer for the RSPCA, added: “There are strict legal conditions on setting these types of traps and not setting them in the right way can mean that you are committing an offence. These traps should be set in such a way to prevent them killing or injuring a domestic animal and so we urge people to think carefully before using them.
“In theory, cats should not get caught in fenn traps if they are being set properly. Those using the traps should be fully aware of the legislation regulating their use and of codes of practice that should be followed to ensure that non-target species are not captured.
“Legally, these traps need be set inside real or artificial tunnels so as to avoid catching any non-target species.”
Anyone who has any further information about the owner of the trap or if you think you might be the owner of the trap, please contact the RSPCA on the inspector appeal line, in confidence, on 0300 123 8018.
The RSPCA can only investigate cases like these with your help. To donate please visit: www.rspca.org.uk/give or text LOVE to 87023 to give £3 (text costs £3 + one standard network rate message).