Marian Burgess, from Fastnet Way, Littlehampton, had to make the tough decision to have beloved family pet Shiloh, 11, put down after she suffered kidney failure.
Shiloh went missing on the morning of Friday, October 14 and was discovered by Marian’s daughter Emily, 25, at 7.45pm the next day in their back garden.
In that time, her weight had dropped from 4.4kg to 2.7kg and she was limping badly, so they took Shiloh to Grove Lodge veterinary hospital in Worthing.
After doing blood tests, the vets told the family that Shiloh had antifreeze in her system which had spread to her kidneys and that she was severely dehydrated.
Marian said: “When I heard, I was gobsmacked. You assume it was an accident, but someone out there could have left it out on purpose. Maybe they wanted to target foxes or other animals, but I would never have dreamed that someone would have targeted our cat.
“The only comfort that we have got is that she managed to find her way home. The vet thought she had gone away to die.”
Shiloh is now buried in the family’s garden.
Marian warned drivers to store their antifreeze carefully and for people to be vigilant. She said: “If it saves another cat’s life, than Shiloh hasn’t died in vain.”
A spokesperson for the RSPCA said: “We understand how upsetting it must be to lose a much-loved pet this way.
“Marian did the right thing by taking her cat straight to the vets and we would advise anyone concerned for their cat’s welfare to do the same.
“Unfortunately, poisoning is not uncommon and cats are naturally inquisitive, so it’s possible these cats had consumed something poisonous, like antifreeze, by accident.
“If anyone has information or evidence of deliberate poisoning we would ask that they ring the RSPCA cruelty line on 0300 123 4999.”
Signs of animal poisoning include depression, appetite loss, vomiting, diarrhoea, breathing difficulties, appearing drunk and uncoordinated, twitching or seizures.
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