Winky the cat has used up one of his nine lives.
A month ago, the four-month-old kitten was shot near a Kambah golf course and was very lucky to survive.
The sickening attack happened over the weekend of May 14. The kitten was found by a horrified member of the public in a terrible state and taken to the RSPCA where staff named him Fergus.
An x-ray revealed two pellets embedded in the cat near its brain. It's not known if more shots were fired but missed. The "motive" for the attack isn't known either.
There was a mountain of veterinary emergency work to remove the pellets and then weeks of careful tending before the tabby was put up for adoption.
At ten o'clock on Tuesday, a family went to the RSPCA and Fergus found a new home.
Why would somebody do this? We very seldom have the answer.Michelle Robertson, chief executive, RSPCA ACT
And a new name. Fergus' new carers, Belle Nicol and Shane Hyatt, renamed their one-eyed adoption, Winky.
Winky joins the other cat in the house, Toast.
"Toast needed a friend and he is very rambunctious and Winky is very timid," Belle said. She and her partner think that the combination will work well.
She said Winky was lovely. "When we met Winky, he was a real sook. He had some chin scratches."
He is a very lucky cat.
The chief executive of the RSPCA in the ACT, Michelle Robertson, said the tiny animal was probably hit by pellets from a .177 rifle which is often used for hunting small animals and killing pests. She said his survival was "a bit of a miracle".
"His eye was so badly damaged that it had to be removed," she said.
She is continually baffled by the cruelty which humans inflict on defenceless animals. "Why would somebody do this? We very seldom have the answer," she said.
Whether it was done by his own owner or as some sort of random attack is not known.
The RSPCA is continuing to investigate the attack and would welcome any information.
The cat remains very timid. "In his case, he's going to need a lot of patience and time in order to work through this," Michelle Robertson said.
After all the veterinary emergency treatment, Winky was traumatized and needed a kind and quiet home.
The RSPCA put a notice on its website: "Hello, my name is Fergus. You may remember me as the kitten who was found last month after having been shot.
"Thanks to the kind team of vets, nurses and animal care staff, I am now feeling MUCH better and I would love to find a forever home of my very own! I have started to become more confident within myself, and with humans, however this is something that I will need my new family to continue with me."
Winky was last seen sleeping peacefully in a basket. He still has eight lives left.
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