Owner of cat left paralysed in Derby air rifle shooting spree facing £4,000 vet bill

Winnie was the first of three cats to be shot over the weekend - she was found by her owners lying injured in her back garden. Credit: BPM Media

The owner of one of the three cats shot in a Derby suburb within 48 hours, says the person responsible should cough up £4,000 to pay her vet bill.

Winnie, a four-year-old cat, was shot with an air rifle in the Hillside Road area of Spondon on Friday 12 January.Winnie was the first of three cats to be shot over the weekend - she was found by her owners lying injured in her back garden.

Emily Conroy, 27, is Winnie's owner and said a metal pellet was found in her spine.

Emily, a nurse at Derbyshire Healthcare, said: "[My partner] Keiran went to pick her up and she just laid on the floor and couldn't move her back legs at all. She was just crying in pain the whole time, it was awful."We took her straight to the vets who checked her legs and discovered that she had no function in her back legs whatsoever - she wasn't able to respond to pain or anything. They scanned her on Saturday morning and that's when they called us to let us know what happened."They told us that she had been shot and that they had found a metal pellet from an air rifle between one of her vertebrae, which had caused it to fracture and was putting pressure on her spinal cord. That has now impacted the neurological function of her back legs and left her unable to move.Emily said that she and Keiran were given two options to save Winnie - either pay upwards of £10,000 for surgery with a specialist - including the time she had already been at the vet - or pay £4,000 for surgery at the vet she was already being treated at - although neither options guarantee that Winnie will be back to her old self."I'm so lucky I had pet insurance as we would have no way of paying this, however, the person who shot my cat needs to cough up the funds really. It's just scary to think that there is someone so evil out there - someone who is shooting into people's gardens where children could be - it's awful."

Three cats were shot with an air rifle in the Hillside Road area of Derby over the weekend. Credit: Google Maps

Derbyshire Police has confirmed that three cats were shot in a Derby suburb over the weekend.

The force said that it received three separate reports of cats being shot by air rifles between Friday, January 12 and Sunday, January 14.A spokesperson for Derbyshire Police said in a statement: "The force has received reports of three cats being shot by an air rifle in a Derby suburb in recent days. All the incidents have taken place in the Hillside Road area of the city.

"The first incident was reported on January 13 with the owner of the cat explaining that their cat had been shot on January 12. The cat was injured sometime between 1pm and 3.30pm and suffered injuries to its spine."On 14 January two more reports were made that two cats had also been shot in the area. The first incident happened between noon and 1pm with the second taking place between noon and 3pm."All three cats required treatment, with at least one suffering potentially life-threatening injuries, and officers are keen to hear from anyone who may be able to assist to contact the force with reference 24*027673.".

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