Northern Ireland news

Charity chief appeals for information over cat caught in snare in Newry

The injured cat is being cared for by the USPCA. Picture by USPCA/PA Wire
Michelle Devane, PA

An animal welfare charity has appealed for information after a cat was found injured in a snare in Newry, Co Down.

The USPCA said the male cat was found hanging by its back legs from a fence, with a snare caught around its abdomen in the Barcroft Park area on Saturday.

The cat was brought to the charity’s veterinarian team who had to use bolt cutters to remove the wire snare.

It was treated for its injuries and the charity is now hoping to reunite it with his owner.

USPCA chief executive Brendan Mullan said: “This is a very distressing case for a member of the public to come across, and not one that we have seen often here at the USPCA.

“We don’t know how long the cat was caught in that horrible position, but the level of stress and suffering is unimaginable.

“Our team did a great job in providing treatment and comfort to the cat and have been monitoring its condition throughout the week.


The snare which trapped and injured the cat. Picture by USPCA/PA Wire


“Thankfully following the removal of the snare and the provision of pain relief, he seems to be showing great signs of improvement.”

The cat suffered a severe injury to an eye, most likely caused by its struggle and stress in trying to free itself and it may need to be removed.

Mr Mullan said the charity was “very grateful” to the members of the public who rescued the cat from such a “terrible situation”.

“We believe that this cat does have an owner as, despite his ordeal, he is very friendly – we hope that through the help of the public we can reunite him with his owners.

Free running snares are legal in Northern Ireland and are primarily used for wildlife management, targeting the likes of rabbits and foxes.

Under the Snares Order (Northern Ireland) 2015, a snare must be checked at least once a day and must not be set “in a place or in such manner where an animal caught by the snare is likely to – (a) become fully or partially suspended, or (b) drown”.

Mr Mullan said: “This is a very unusual place for a snare to be set and it is unknown to us if the cat was caught elsewhere and had tried to jump the fence, however, it is undeniable that the use of any snare like this is inhumane and causes suffering.

“The USPCA recognises the necessity of capturing animals on a limited scale for a variety of reasons, however, the only acceptable means of doing so is through the use of live traps, and only when the trap is capable of restraining an animal without causing pain or injury and is visited at least every 12 hours.

“In our view, there is no body-grip trap which does not cause unacceptable suffering.”

The USPCA has appealed for anyone with any information about the incident to report it to the PSNI or to speak to a member of its team on 028-3025-1000.”

Northern Ireland news