Pet cat Suffers Fatal Injuries After Being Shot With air gun in Bristol

A couple who were devastated when their much-loved cat died after being shot near their home have backed Cats Protection’s campaign for air guns to be licensed.

Katherine Brown, 27, and partner Tom were in their garden in Bristol when their 15-month-old cat Alaska staggered home in agony.

Despite rushing her to an emergency vet, Alaska died 20 minutes later. An X-ray showed an air gun pellet lodged into her chest.

Katherine said: “It was such a traumatic experience to see our beautiful cat in such pain. She was a lovely, friendly cat and had been such a joy to have around, especially over the past few months of lockdown. She never did anything to hurt anyone, and I can’t imagine why anyone would want to harm a defenceless animal in such a way.

“Until this happened, I had no idea that anyone over the age of 18 could own an air gun. You just assume there must be some kind of restrictions over weapons that can inflict such injuries. Not only is it devastating to lose Alaska in such a horrific way, it’s really worrying that there are people around who use weapons like this in such a nasty and reckless manner.”

Katherine and Tom have reported the shooting, which happened on 11 August, to police and contacted their local MP, Kerry McCarthy.

Cats Protection, the UK’s largest cat charity which helps around 200,000 cats every year, has been campaigning for air gun licensing in England and Wales, in line with existing laws in Scotland and Northern Ireland.

Cats Protection’s Senior Advocacy & Government Relations Officer Madison Rogers said: “Alaska suffered appalling injuries and her last moments must have been incredibly painful and traumatic for her. Her story goes to show the scale and severities of injuries which can be inflicted by an air gun.

“Many people are shocked to learn that these lethal weapons can be owned by anyone aged over 18 in England and Wales. This is in contrast with Scotland and Northern Ireland, which both have sensible, modern laws in place that require licensing of air guns.

“Sadly, Alaska’s story is not a one-off and we see many instances where cats are shot by air guns, often sustaining life-changing or fatal injuries. Modern legislation on air gun ownership is now well overdue in England and Wales.”

“It is particularly saddening to hear of acts of deliberate cruelty during the pandemic, as people want and deserve to feel safe in their communities.”

Cats Protection’s petition calling for air gun licensing in England and Wales has now gathered over 115,000 signatures. The Government launched a review into air weapons legislation in October 2017, including a consultation which concluded on 6 February 2018, but have not reported their next steps.

To sign the petition, please visit

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10 thoughts on “Pet cat Suffers Fatal Injuries After Being Shot With air gun in Bristol

  1. floridaborne says:

    My sister-in-law just lost one of her dogs to an air gun. Her other dogs were barking, she ran outside, and some guy had jumped her fence. He had shot a very cute and loving dog that was the size of a cat. It’s not an isolated incident in that community and the sheriff’s office is looking for the person who is doing it. I have my opinion about what should happened to people like that. I start it out by saying, “We have an overcrowded world…”

  2. Doug Thomas says:

    How many times do people have to be told: DO NOT allow your pets outside unless they are supervised (on a leash or in a dog park, for example) or in a enclosed pet safe yard! This tragedy is as much the fault of the owner as the axxxxxx who shot the pet with the air gun. That sounds harsh, I know, but, as a person with a black Persian, I know that just the fact he’s black is sufficient for nasty people to try to harm him if he were to show up in their yard or on the street. My cat doesn’t get out where harm could come to him.

    • chrisscatmeow says:

      My boy is 13 and black he loves being outside in summer he lies in the sun puddles and in winter he plays in the snow. He doesn’t wander far which im glad off I guess the area where you stay has lots to do with it. In my scheme there is 20 houses and mostly all have a dog or cat and we look out for each other and our pets. So I don’t think the owner is to blame it those crazy folk going about with guns should definitely be banned.x???

  3. Create-A-Holic Writer says:

    How can people be so cruel? I hope that they pay for their cruelties in the next life. I agree with not letting your cat wander outside. There are too many dangers. Best to keep them in with the people who love them.

  4. Lavinia Ross says:

    Another good reason to keep cats inside. People can be malicious, not to mention cats can be taken out by coyotes, cougar, owls, foxes, raccoons, possums, domestic dogs, etc.. Cars and motorcycles take their tool as well.

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