SPANISH FORK, Utah - A cat was shot in the head with a dart gun and left for dead in Spanish Fork, and it’s not the first time this animal has been targeted.
The Humane Society of Utah and the Humane Society of the United States have offered a combined $8,000 reward for anyone who has information that leads to an arrest.
The cat, named Miss Kiss, was found on the Spanish Fork River Trail last week with a dart sticking out of her neck..
“It just breaks your heart, I don’t care if you’re not a cat lover, animal lover, it’s just not right,” said Camille Bone of the South Utah Valley Animal Shelter.
Bone has been nursing Miss Kiss back to health for the past week. The 6-month-old appears very playful, but when you look closer you can see the pain she’s been through.
“She came in and there was a blow dart sticking out the right side of her head,” said Dr. Issac Bott of the Mountain West Animal Hospital.
X-rays show the steel dart went into her neck and through her skull, ending up just above her left eye. Bott performed surgery to remove the dart.
“Luckily, she’s a tough kitty and she pulled through and did very well,” Bott said.
Miss Kiss appears to be getting her paws back under her, but she most likely suffered permanent damage.
“I don’t know that she has vision in the right eye right now," Bott said. "We’re going to reassess it in the next couple of weeks. She does have some permanent brain damage unfortunately, but I think she’s going to be able to function and lead a life that’s free of pain and suffering.”
Bott also discovered she had been shot at least once before. The tip of a dart was found lodged in her leg. So far police don’t have any suspects.
“Here in Utah, we definitely have some felony animal cruelty laws, and I think that this is an absolute, clear violation of that,” Bott said.
As for Miss Kiss, several people have offered to adopt her. The number one qualification is lots of love.
“She’s going to need care for the rest of her life, medication probably the rest of her life, things like that, so she’s not out of it yet and probably never will be,” Bone said.
More than $2,000 has been spent on Miss Kiss’ recovery and those medical bills are expected to get even steeper. She may need to have her right eye removed. If you are interested in helping Miss Kiss, go to the Utah Valley Animal Rescue website to donate.