BRADENTON, Fla. (WWSB) - Nicole is a local animal advocate and every day she stops by an area near 16th Street West in Bradenton to feed the stray cats.
Over the weekend, she made a grisly discovery.
“There’s a dead cat in the middle of the yard. It was just laying there I picked it up and looked at it," said Nicole, who did not want to give her last name.
Cats, especially those living outdoors, succumb to age and the elements. But the next day, it was clear something was amiss when Nicole found yet another dead cat.
“They rushed it to Manatee Veterinary Emergency Hospital and it was confirmed the cat was poisoned and shot with a .22 caliber gun,” she said.
By the end of the weekend, Nicole and another animal advocate had found five dead cats in the neighborhood.
One neighbor, who did not want to appear on camera, said she cannot believe someone would do something like this. “It’s emotional, you know? To see a poor cat like that. No cat deserves that."
Nicole says she knows for some, stray cats in a neighborhood can feel like a nuisance, but says killing them is not the solution.
“Unfortunately this is a major dilemma in this area. Spaying or neutering your animals is the most important thing," she said.
Manatee County Animal Services says they are investigating this incident.
For more information on the organization helping these stray cats, follow this link.