Cat left with 9-inch arrow stuck in body after being targeted by twisted crossbow thugs

A pet owner was horrified to find his missing cat back home with a nine-inch crossbow arrow lodged through his body.

Jim McLean had not seen his beloved ginger tabby Nuke for two days, when the cat turned up at his house in Kingussie, in the Scottish Highlands with the horrific injury.

The arrow – shot from a crossbow – had gone through Nuke’s shoulder blades and between his lungs.

Luckily it missed his heart and spine by inches in the process.

Incredibly the beloved feline was still able to walk and is now being treated by vets.

Jim believes the incident was deliberate – with the cruel perpetrators using the cat’s friendly and affectionate nature to their advantage, the Daily Record reports.

He and other residents in the village have been left sickened by the attack and are now scared to let their pets outside.

The 52-year-old, originally from Newcastle, told the Record: “We’ve been out looking for him every day. He turned up yesterday at the back of the house and couldn’t get over the fence with this cross-bow dart in him.

“We rushed him up to the vet and they said that they’ve never seen a cat able to walk about and still alive with a thing this size in him.”

“It looks to me like whoever has done it has pinned him into a corner or whispered him over because he is such a friendly boy. The vet said that he has definitely used one of his nine lives.”

“It is not an accident, it is predatory. Whoever has done this is a sick human being and I hope they get help. Putting a cross-bow into a friendly defenceless animal is just sick. Nuke would go to anybody for a cuddle.

“Whether it is kids, teenagers or adults, they obviously knew what they were doing and that they would cause harm to our cat. If they can do that to an animal, they could do it to a human.

“Everybody in the village is scared to let their animals out now. Somebody must know something about it, it is such a small, tight-knit community. It is a lethal weapon.”

While Jim faces a four-figure vet bill to remove the bolt in Nuke’s body, police are appealing to members of the public in a bid to trace those responsible.

A Police Scotland spokesperson said: “At 4pm on Friday, July 22, we received a report that a cat had been seriously injured by a crossbow.

“The cat was found by its owner in the Orchard Court area of Kingussie and the incident was believed to have happened earlier this week. Inquiries are ongoing.”

An online fundraiser was been launched to help Jim and his family pay for Nuke’s operation. It can be viewed here.

Anybody with information on the incident is urged to contact officers on 101, quoting reference number 2421 of July 22, 2022.