A cat lost a leg and tail after he is believed to have accidentally roamed into an animal trap.
Jeremy Norton, 38, fears his beloved Rupert was caught in the trap after going for a Saturday afternoon stroll near his home in Montpelier Road, Brighton.
He had to have the already-severed limb and tail completely removed at Coastway Vets in Freshfield Road, Brighton following the ordeal on December 28.
Mr Norton, 38, who works in digital advertising, said: “Rupert dragged himself home and he did not seem right.
“I wondered what was wrong and then realised that he was missing most of his foot and tail.
“I took him to the vets straight away and he was in a state of shock.
"The vet explained the only thing that could have done this would have been an animal trap. The wounds were completely clean cuts. There was almost no bleeding.”
Mr Norton said he informed the police and the RSPCA.
He continued: “What makes it interesting is that I live on the bottom end of Montpelier Road and Rupert only ever travels as far as the end of the block and back - who on earth would have such a trap in this vicinity in the centre of the city.
“There are lots of cats in this immediate area and awareness about Rupert's injuries might provide sufficient warning to other locals and their pets who don't want to go through a similar trauma that Rupert and I experienced over the New Year period.”
A Coastway Vets spokeswoman confirmed they treated Rupert, but could not confirm how Rupert suffered the injuries.
The RSPCA said there were different types of traps in the UK including spring traps and cage traps.
A spokesman said: “The use of spring traps to kill animals is controlled mainly by two pieces of legislation.
“With certain exceptions, all spring traps must be tested and approved and they must only be used for the target species for that particular trap and be set in a natural or artificial tunnel.
“Broadly speaking the Wildlife and Countryside Act works on the premise that mammals are unprotected except for certain species, whereas all birds have protection unless they are listed as exceptions.
“Cage traps are also used to capture various mammals such as feral cats, mink and grey squirrels.
“Once an animal has been caught, it could be protected under the Animal Welfare Act 2006 and an offence committed if unnecessary suffering is caused, for example it is left to suffer in the trap or not humanely despatched.”