Two cats are recovering in lower Thornhill after being shot with a BB gun in their own yards.
In late July, Misty Thomas discovered her three-year old Siamese cat Talia had a large, swollen lump on her side. Perplexed, Thomas says it wasn’t clear what had happened to their cat until they hosted a family gathering the first week of August.
“We have a plum tree and the kids were going to eat the plums, and my husband went and picked one and went, ‘What’s this?’” Thomas says. “It was actually a gold-coloured BB [pellet] lodged in our fruit tree. That’s when it actually connected about what had happened to Talia.”
BB guns are air guns designed to shoot metallic ball projectiles, most of them can shoot faster than 200 ft. per second. Velocity this high can pierce skin even from 18-metres away.
Thomas walked over to her neighbour Gemma Evans’ house on Pine Ave. to warn her about what had happened, as it appeared the pellets were shot into their backyard from Paquette Ave. She also installed two security cameras on her property for surveillance.
“She doesn’t normally go far…our cats usually stay in our yard. They don’t wander too far at all,” Thomas says. “The scary thing is the direction it came from is where the [Thornhill Elementary] school is.”
A few weeks later on Aug. 15, Thomas’ neighbour Evans found her 11-month old cat Maximus outside in her yard and realized he had a circular, open wound on his tail.
“He bled on my hand so I brought him inside and I noticed that there was a wound on him,” Evans says.
Recalling what had happened to Thomas’ cat, she called Terrace RCMP to file a report and took Maximus to the vet, where he was prescribed antibiotics to prevent infection.
“I think it’s so cruel,” Evans says. Like Thomas, neither of her cats stray far from home and she’s never received any complaints about them.
“He’s my baby…now both my cats are trapped inside and they’re not impressed. [Maximus] is a big talker, he’s just constantly meowing but I’m not letting them outside. I don’t want them to get shot at.”
Both cats are now recovering. The swelling on Talia’s wound has since gone down, and hair is starting to grow back. Maximus’ wound is also healing. But with this happening so close to home, both neighbours are on edge about who could have done this, and if it could happen again.
“I was crushed that someone could hurt an animal like that. And if they’re shooting these into backyards, the concern is for kids being around,” Thomas says. “Our neighbourhood is a safe community, we all look out for each other. I don’t know why someone would do that.”
Anyone with information regarding this or other animal cruelty incidents can call the BC SPCA at 1-855-622-7722.