The owners of two cats were horrified to see their pets struck down by crossbow bolts.
The incidents occurred in the Kingussie area in the Scottish Highlands, last week when the stunned owners found their pets with grave injuries.
While one cat survived following surgery at a vet despite the bolt being stuck in its neck and body, the other was less fortunate and passed away.
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Jack McLean is the owner of Nuke – an 11-year-old tabby who was missing for three days before being struck by the crossbow – who said that when he first saw the bolt in Nuke's neck, there was a chance he may not have made it.
He told STV News: “At first I looked at it and the angle it had gone in and thought it might just have pierced his skin, but I thought if it isn’t it’s probably going to be the end.
“It was a heartbreaking drive over to the vet, which is 45 minutes away on a not busy day, but we got him to the vet and an hour was spent getting him x-rays. I couldn’t believe the pictures, they were insane.”
Nuke's survival is nothing short of a miracle as despite the bolt piercing around nine inches between his neck and shoulder as well lodging into his body, the bolt had veered from any of Nuke's organs.
Despite having the option of taking to Nuke to a specialist in Glasgow – which was a two hour drive away – for a CAT scan, the family made the decision to book him in for immediate surgery at Grantown vets.
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Mr McLean said he didn't want to take a chance with Nuke's health, which led to the decision of having the surgery.
“I thought, he’s done blooming well, I didn’t want to drive him to Glasgow for him to be on death’s door so I opted to have the removal there. I didn’t think he was going to make it through," he said.
That decision turned out to be a shrewd one as Nuke's surgery was a success with the tabby recovering at home before a check-up a few days later.
Unfortunately, not everybody was as lucky as Nuke as another Kingussie resident found his cat, Theo, shot with a crossbow and despite the removal of the bolt at Grantown vets, the cat passed away.
His owner, Aidan Bruce, posted the news on Facebook on Saturday evening (July 23).
He wrote: “Yesterday when I came home from work I found my cat Theo with a crossbow bolt in his chest laying on his bed.
“My brother and I rushed him to the Grantown vets but upon removal of the bolt Theo passed away…the police have been informed.”
Sergeant Craig McGhee has urged for anybody in the local community to help the police find whoever was responsible and added: "“If anyone saw anything suspicious around the time of this incident or has information that could help with our ongoing enquiries then please get in touch."
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