The Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (RSPCA) has launched an urgent appeal to the public for information following a tragic incident involving a cat named Stan. The beloved family pet met a heartbreaking end after becoming trapped in a lethal spring trap, ultimately losing his life. The distressing discovery was made under a car in Pennard Avenue, Liverpool, where poor Stan was found lifeless, his head ensnared by a heavy trap.
Inspector Joanne McDonald, who is spearheading the investigation, expressed deep sorrow over the incident, stating, "This is such an incredibly heartbreaking incident. Stan was a much-loved family pet, and his owners are understandably devastated by this tragic loss." The weight of the trap suggests that Stan did not venture far before his untimely demise. To make matters worse, the trap was adorned with glued food and lacked the necessary tunnel setting mandated by law. This irresponsible act placed any animal in the vicinity at a grave risk of severe injury. Inspector McDonald further noted, "There also appears to be different coloured fur on the trap, which suggests it had previously caught another animal."
While spring traps are not illegal in the United Kingdom, Section 8 of the Pests Act 1954 explicitly prohibits the use of spring traps, unless they are approved and used in specific circumstances. Joanne McDonald emphasized, "We want to caution pet owners in the area about this incident and urge them to remain vigilant. If anyone possesses any information regarding this distressing event, we implore them to come forward so that we can thoroughly investigate the matter. It is truly devastating that this has occurred, and we must identify the individuals responsible to prevent another innocent animal from falling victim."
Evie Button, a representative from the RSPCA's wildlife department, condemned the use of spring traps as cruel and barbaric. These devices inflict horrific injuries, often resulting in fatal consequences, as evidenced by poor Stan's tragic fate. Button stated, "These traps demonstrate a complete lack of discrimination. Their victims can be wildlife or beloved family pets. Regardless of the animal, these devices cause immense suffering. We are greatly concerned that someone would deploy such a trap in a residential area where people frequently walk their dogs and where cats are commonly found."
Improperly set spring traps can have devastating outcomes, and the RSPCA urges anyone with information about this incident to come forward and assist with their investigation. The organization firmly opposes the manufacture, sale, and use of all traps that inflict suffering. It is important to note that individuals found guilty of causing unnecessary suffering to a protected animal can face severe penalties, including an unlimited fine and/or up to five years in prison.
For those who possess any relevant information about this incident, the RSPCA has established an appeal line. By dialing 0300 123 8018 and quoting incident number 1044752, concerned individuals can provide valuable assistance in uncovering the truth and ensuring justice for Stan.
In addition to the appeal, it is essential for communities to raise awareness about the dangers of lethal traps and the importance of responsible trap usage. Pet owners must remain vigilant while walking their animals and report any suspicious activity that could jeopardize the welfare of animals in their area. The incident involving Stan serves as a tragic reminder of the need for stringent enforcement of laws regarding animal cruelty and the urgency to hold perpetrators accountable. Together, we can strive to create a safer environment for all animals and prevent such heartbreaking incidents from occurring in the future.