A Selby pensioner has told how the RSPCA seized her beloved pet cat from the street and put him down within the space of 24 hours.
Mrs Baker said that over the weekend, Nightshift had come down with a respiratory problem. She took him to the vet on Bank Holiday Monday and paid more than £100 to have him treated.
A neighbour later told her that an RSPCA van had been seen in the area and Mrs Baker then contacted the charity.
She said: “A woman confirmed they had picked up a cat in Selby. She phoned back and said she had bad news – he had been put down. I can’t understand it as his fur was healthy, his eyes were clear.”
She said the female inspector who had taken Nightshift was asked to bring the cat’s body back to Mrs Baker, and he had now been buried in her garden.
Mrs Baker said there appeared to have been no attempt to find out who owned the animal before he was taken away.
She said: “She (the inspector) just grabbed him off the street, bundled him into a van and had him destroyed.”
A spokeswoman for the RSPCA said that if the cat had been microchipped it would have meant he could have been returned.
She said: “We are sorry that the cat’s owner has been caused upset and distress. We have been in touch with her to convey our sympathies.
“Our staff have animals’ best interests at heart. An RSPCA inspector took the cat to a vet who confirmed that it was extremely ill and suffering from several problems including kidney failure and breathing problems.
“Generally, if an RSPCA inspector finds a healthy cat then it is kept for seven days while we make inquiries and endeavour to track down an owner, but this cannot always be the case if an animal is very ill or injured and needs immediate veterinary treatment.”