Yorkshire cat loses leg in illegal gin trap
16 January 2008
THE RSPCA has issued a warning about the danger to pets caused by illegal snares and traps after a cat lost a leg near Doncaster.
The cat was found collapsed after dragging herself through a garden after being caught in an illegal gin trap in Epworth.
Her leg was still caught in the device and she was so seriously injured a vet had to remove her trapped leg.
The animal welfare charity says she could have been struggling to get free for several days.
RSPCA Deputy Chief Inspector Ilena Clark said: "The poor thing was in a shocking condition when she was found. She looked like she'd been battling with the trap for a prolonged period. She's lucky to be alive.
"Thankfully the wound has healed really well. It's taken a lot of TLC from staff and volunteers at South Yorkshire animal centre in Bawtry to get her back to full health but I'm pleased to say she's made it."
Now the cat has been found a happy home with Lynne Curtis and Michael Joab who live in the Doncaster village of Wroot.
The couple had lost a cat to cancer on the very day they saw the puss they've named Princess.
Lynne said: "She's our Princess Peg-leg. She comes and sits with us at night, and she's always purring, so I suppose that means she's happy.
"The day we first saw her was awful. I'd been to the vets in the morning with my 16-year-old cat who had cancer. She'd been poorly all over Christmas and I knew it was time for her to go.
"In the afternoon I said 'Come on, let's go to the RSPCA' and that's when we found her.
"She was in the end pen, she was the last one we saw, and we just fell in love with her. She looked like she needed someone to be patient and care for her, and we thought, 'that's the one for us'."
Ilena Clark of the RSPCA added: "Obviously she'll never get her leg back, and somebody out there is responsible for that.
"These devices are illegal for a reason. They're barbaric and cruel, and we'd like to hear from anyone who knows anything about what happened here, to stop it happening again."
Gin traps are mechanical devices designed to catch an animal by its leg, using spring-operated jaws with teeth or a serrated edge. The use of gin traps has been illegal in the UK since 1958, but some are still being used to catch animals such as rabbits and foxes.
Anyone found guilty of setting a gin trap which causes unnecessary suffering to an animal faces a maximum £20,000 fine and up to six months in prison.
Source: The Star
Location: , England
Case Ref: 264/2008