A cat stepped into an illegal trap intended for wildlife in Riverside Wednesday, requiring animal control officers to free the feline, whose paw was spared amputation despite being clamped in the device for an unknown period of time.
According to Riverside County Department of Animal Services spokesman John Welsh, officers were alerted to a crying cat under the hood of a pickup truck Wednesday morning along Hershey Way, and when they investigated, they discovered the 6-year-old orange tabby, dubbed “Chloe,” with her rear right paw snared.
“We saw her hanging upside down, but we didn’t know what was going on until we opened up the hood,” said animal control Officer Tiffany Fuller. “We saw an inhumane, old-style trap on her foot.”
Fuller and another officer forcibly opened the jaws of the trap and took the cat to the Western Riverside County Animal Shelter in Jurupa Valley for veterinary care.
Video taken before and after the rescue is available at https://youtu.be/_Bt8sVQnE0I .
Welsh said that after examining the injured paw, clinicians determined it was not damaged to the point that amputation was necessary.
County officials noted that the snap-clamp device into which Chloe stepped is no longer legal in California, but property owners continue to use them to catch pests, including coyotes.
According to Welsh, anyone caught using the devices can face animal cruelty charges. The source of the trap that snared Chloe was not known, but the case remains under investigation.
Chloe is now available for adoption at the shelter, which can be reached at (951) 358-7387.
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