A warning has been issued to pet owners in the Creggan area after 10 pet cats vanished and some of them were later found dead from suspected poisoning.
One woman told the ‘Journal’ that she was searching every day for her pet but that she feared the worst after two cats- a grey one and a ginger and brown one- have both turned up dead in the area over recent days.
She said that other distraught cat owners and neighbours had made contact with her after their pets went missing as well.
All of the cats have gone missing from the same Cromore Gardens area of Creggan over the past few weeks.
There have also been reports that a small pet dog and a large Rottweiler were also found dead from suspected poison.
The woman, who asked not to be named because she is afraid, said: “We think they are being poisoned. It is a disgrace to think that anyone would do that to a wee cat. It’s a mortal sin.
“How in under God can you do that?
“There are 10 now missing altogether and they are all family pets. One girl has reported it to the Rainbow Centre.”
She added: “I let my one out and she usually comes back. She hardly leaves around here.
“It’s just heartbreaking. One of the owners was crying wild about her cat. I’m really upset myself too, she was great company and it is just terrible to think somebody would do that.
“I get up every morning now and check out the back to see if she is there and go out looking at night, hoping, but I know in my heart she’s gone.”
The woman said she wanted other pet owners in the area to be aware of what was going on.
A spokeswoman for Derry City Council confirmed that they have received a complaint from a Cromore resident regarding a number of dead cats on her property, which have now been removed by a third party.
She also said that to date they have not recorded higher number of calls or received reports of any unusual circumstances relating to animal welfare issues in the Creggan area.
The spokesperson added: “Members of the public with any queries regarding cleansing in their areas should contact the Derry City Council on 02871 374107, and whilst it may not the responsibility of Derry City Council to remove debris such as dead animals if for example it is on private land, the complaint will be logged and forwarded to the cleansing supervisor to organise appropriate action.”