A family cat in Belvedere has been left partially blind and stuck with a pellet lodged in its skull after being shot with an air rifle.

One-year-old Moss was let out into his garden in Picardy Road at around 7.30am on October 7 – before being found in a pool of his own blood 15 minutes later.

Moss was “in a state of shock” and his owners rushed him to the vets after cleaning his wound, not initially realising that his injuries were from an air rifle shot.

After an assessment, Moss was referred from Pet Care Veterinary Service in Erith to Queen Mother Animal Hospital where he remained in critical condition and almost died due to the attack.

Moss is now recovering well, but is blind in one eye and the pellet remains lodged in his skull.

Moss’ owner, who wishes to remain anonymous, told the News Shopper: “It is just so cruel – there are some sick twisted people out there.

“I remember on the day they were talking about resuscitation and how they would not recommend resuscitating Moss just in case he had brain damage – and that if he was resuscitated, he would be brain dead.

“I wasn't ready for that kind of talk.

“It just annoys me and scares me at the same time knowing that the shooter is around this neighbourhood potentially when here are so many pets in this area as well.

“I know one of my neighbours has three cats and they seem to be roaming around fine.

“I’m not sure why specifically Moss was attacked but this is the first I’ve heard of anything of this sort happening.

“Our decision is that Moss will be an indoor cat from now on, at least until something has been done about this – it’s very unsafe for pets on my street right now.”

News Shopper: XRay of Moss XRay of Moss (Image: Anon)

Moss’ owner said that when he first found his cat, he initially thought he had been injured by a tree branch or a similar incident.

He said it did not come to mind that it could have been an air rifle wound as he “didn’t think this kind of thing happened”.

He added: “There were talks that someone shot him when I brought him in – that was just the vets talking amongst themselves.

“I was still under the impression it was not a bullet wound.

“I went home and around 20 minutes later they called to say they had found the pellet still lodged in his skull.”

After a CT scan, the vets also found that there is still a fragment of the skull or bullet in Moss' brain.

There were some concerns from the vets about potential permanent brain damage, but fortunately Moss seems neurologically stable since his treatment.

Moss’ owner said that his wounded eye now “looks to be moving but he just can't see through it”.

The total vet bills are estimated at between £5,000 and £6,000 but Moss’ pet insurance only covers up to £1,000.

A GoFundMe fundraiser has been set up to assist the family with the costs for the treatment, and they would be grateful for any support.

While the family cat is now recovering well and is in “high-spirits”, his owners are well aware that they almost lost him.

Moss is described as quite a passive cat that “never got into fights with other cats” and generally ran away from any loud noises or trouble.

The family contacted the police and the RSPCA about the attack on October 8.

Recently, the News Shopper has reported on other incidents of air rifle attacks on cats in the Bexley borough.

Speaking about recent arrests in Foots Cray Meadows on Sunday, October 16 after people were reportedly seen shooting at wildlife with air rifles, Moss’ owner added: “It's just very cruel and I don't understand what drives people to do that kind of stuff.

“Genuinely hurting living thing is crazy and to like basically have your eyes opened to this other kind of person who shoots wild animals is scary.”

A spokesperson for the Metropolitan Police said: “On 8 October, police received a report of criminal damage in Picardy Road, Bexley.

“It was reported a cat had been shot with an air gun on 7 October between 7.30am and 7.45am.

“The incident was investigated but no reasonable lines of enquiry were established.

“The case has been closed.

“However, if any new information comes to light it will be reviewed and the case could be re-opened.”

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