23 June 2022

A 78-year-old Witchcliffe man has been charged with animal cruelty.

The charge follows the discovery of a cat in a rusty steel-jaw trap, its leg so badly damaged that the limb had to be amputated.

RSPCA WA received a cruelty report in August 2021 after the six-year-old cat’s carer, who was looking after the tabby for her daughter, heard the cat’s cries of distress.

The cat was found in the accused’s yard, her leg badly injured and bleeding in the trap.

She was rushed to a local vet who tried to save the leg but after three weeks of treatment, it was determined amputation was the only option.

The accused told the RSPCA he had set the trap to catch rabbits. He is scheduled to face the Bunbury Magistrates Court on 7 July.

The man is charged under sections 19(1) and 19(2)(b) of the Animal Welfare Act 2002. The RSPCA will allege he was cruel to an animal by using a prescribed inhumane device to catch the animal.

The maximum penalty for a charge of animal cruelty is a $50,000 fine and five years in prison.

The RSPCA relies on the community to report incidents of suspected cruelty and neglect. Report cruelty 24/7 on 1300 CRUELTY (1300 278 358) or online here.