RSPCA Cymru is appealing for information after a cat’s leg was caught by a trap in Cefn Hengoed.
The RSPCA was contacted after the black cat was found at Cheriton Avenue with the trap still attached to his leg.
The owner was found and the two-year-old black cat – named Ronnie – was immediately taken to a veterinary surgery.
RSPCA inspector Sophie Daniels said: “His foot was massively swollen. Luckily he had no broken bones and had just bruising and swelling and soft tissue damage.
“He has been put on medication and is now much better. It was lucky he wasn’t severely injured, but the poor thing must have been in so much pain.
“As we don’t know where the trap may have come from, or who may be responsible we are appealing for information.
“The trap is a fenn trap – which isn’t illegal – but domestic animals often fall foul of traps, and it is illegal to cause unnecessary suffering by using them.
“If anyone has any information about this incident, please get in touch. Please ring our inspectorate line on 0300 123 8018, which is in confidence.”
Ronnie’s owner said: “Ronnie didn’t come home the night before so we were concerned about him.
“We thought he had a broken leg, but luckily it wasn’t. He is just limping around a lot. He is on painkillers. I am just glad he is okay.”
RSPCA’s wildlife scientific information officer Llewelyn Lowen added: “There are strict legal conditions on setting these types of traps and if they are not set in the right way a domestic animal, like this cat, can get injured or even killed. If this happens the person setting the trap could be committing an offence.
“Generally speaking however, cats should not get caught in fenn traps if they are being set properly. Those using the traps should be fully aware of the legislation regulating their use and of codes of practice that should be followed.
“These traps should be set inside real or artificial tunnels and the entrance to the tunnel should be restricted so as to avoid incidents like this.”
The RSPCA is opposed to the manufacture, sale and use of all snares and any traps which cause suffering. A snare is a wire noose which is attached to a stake or heavy object that acts as an anchor.
While the use of gin traps has been illegal in the UK since 1958, some are still being used to catch animals such as rabbits and foxes.
Gin traps are mechanical traps designed to catch an animal by its leg, using spring-operated jaws with teeth or a serrated edge. Anyone found guilty of setting a gin trap faces a maximum £20,000 fine and/or six months in prison.
If you spot an animal in distress, please call the RSPCA’s 24-hour helpline on 0300 1234 999.
If you would like to help the RSPCA, you can give £3 now by texting HELP to 78866 (text costs £3 + one standard network rate message). We are a charity and rely on public donations to exist.