A battle over the fate of an ailing stray has animal lovers defending a tomcat named Mr. Skanky Pants after some villagers suggested he be shot.
The tomcat, who is something of a local legend, lives in the village of Compton, west of London. He’s a neighborhood favorite, according to news reports in the UK. But because he is FIV-positive, some residents went on the community Facebook calling for him to be shot.
One commenter wrote: “He needs shooting to help him out of his pain. There won’t be a lot of people agree with me, but you have to be cruel to be kind sometimes?”
“We would never advise that a cat should be shot,” said Karen Clarke, manager at Cats Protection’s Newbury adoption center, pictured below.
The suggestion was condemned as inhumane by other Facebook users. “I have three cats and would hate to see this cat shot when even with his problems he might get help if caught.” “Poor boy. Don’t shoot him,” wrote another.
The cat was abandoned by a former resident a number of years ago and has been a stray ever since. “We suggest for the cat’s welfare that it is trapped, neutered if needed, and then either returned to where it was found or we would look for a new home for it,” said Clarke.
“In the case of FIV-positive cats, we would find them an indoor-only home which reduces their risk of spreading infection to other cats and lowers their chance of succumbing to other infectious diseases, to which they may be more susceptible.”