Heartbreaking photos show pet cat ‘Belle’ clinging to her owner with her foot clamped in the jaws of an illegal ‘gin trap’ after crawling home in agony
- A c owner was shocked to find their pet had got their paw stuck in an illegal trap
- Vets believe that Belle may need to have her leg amputated due to her injuries
- The traps were originally used to catch stoats and foxes but outlawed in 1958
Shocking photos show how a pet cat suffered ‘horrific’ injuries after her paw became wedged inside an illegal animal trap.
Police said Belle was caught in the jaws of the banned device while walking close to her home, in the Forest of Dean, Gloucestershire, on Wednesday, October 26.
Incredibly, the maimed feline managed to crawl back home to her stunned owner, but vets who are now treating her think they may have to amputate her leg.
Officers are appealing for information as a cat sustained injuries after becoming stuck in a banned animal trap in the Forest of Dean
Gin traps were originally used to catch stoats and foxes but have been banned in the UK since 1958 (stock image)
The brutal spring-operated mechanism, known as a Gin Trap, were used to capture stoats and foxes but were officially banned in 1958.
PC Cath McDay, of Gloucestershire Constabulary’s Rural Crime Team, warned local pet owners to remain vigilant.
She said: ‘ To witness a pet in this situation is horrific – no one should have to go through this as a result of a careless person who has set a trap illegally – for whatever the intended purpose.
‘Gin Traps were banned for use in 1958, and the use of traps is governed by the Pests Act 1954.’
Vets say that Belle the cat may have to have her leg amputated after it was badly injured by the trap
PC McDay continued: ‘This style of trap is used to catch an animal by its leg or head using spring operated jaws with teeth and the injuries they cause can be horrific.
‘Not only is setting a Gin Trap an offence, and one we take seriously, there are further offences which have been committed as a result of the suffering that has been caused to Belle.’
PC McDay added: ‘I would like pet owners in the Lydney area to be vigilant in relation to this incident and ask anyone with information to make contact with us.’