A family are still in “complete shock” after their cat was shot with an air rifle, while police have exhausted all lines of enquiry.

Kings Langley resident Keith Farndon’s cat Willow came home vomiting and in a bad way on Saturday (February 24), after what the family assumed was a cat fight.

Advice over the phone was to "keep an eye on her" and, after staying with Willow overnight, it became apparent she was not getting better so Keith took her to the vet the next day.

Watford Observer: Willow after surgery.Willow after surgery. (Image: Keith Farndon)

An X-ray revealed that an air pellet had caused internal damage and was still lodged inside the pet, which meant Willow had to be rushed to Hitchin for specialist surgery that it was not clear she would survive.

Mr Farndon said: “We are sickened that someone close by has committed this heinous act, it’s beyond belief that a human could be so cruel.

“We’re protective owners and know from visual and GPS collar checks that our cat stays in a limited area near our house.”

Watford Observer: Willow/the air pellet.Willow/the air pellet. (Image: Keith Farndon)The 53-year-old added that he encouraged anyone who had information about what happened to contact him or police as he was “really concerned” and wanted to make sure this does not happen to another pet.

On Tuesday afternoon, Willow was able to return home with Keith, his wife, and their two teenage children.

The two-year-old cat now has a “deep scar” but is recuperating and “should hopefully be ok”.

Watford Observer: The X-ray.The X-ray. (Image: Keith Farndon)

Keith reported what happened to police and said the shooter should “feel the full weight of the law”. According to specialist vets the shot was apparently from “close range”.

A Herts Police spokesperson confirmed that it investigated the offence and although all lines of enquiry have been exhausted, “any new information that comes to light will be acted on accordingly”.

Watford Observer: Willow.Willow. (Image: Keith Farndon)

“The incident is believed to have happened in the Chantry Close area between 11am and 1pm on Saturday, February 24,” they added.

The force said any information can be reported online at herts.police.uk/report or by calling 101 quoting crime reference 41/16110/24.