A grieving Havant family are calling for the public’s help to find the 'evil' men who ‘egged’ three dogs on to maul their beloved cat to death
Boots was found dead in the Hedge End Walk area after three lurcher type dogs were seen chasing him on September 19, just before 11pm.
Now his distraught owners Tom Watts, his mother and brother, are launching an appeal in The News to bring their cat’s killers to justice.
The 21-year-old who works at Cash Converters in Portsmouth said: ‘Boots was four. We'd had him about two and a half years.
‘He was a stray and he used to come in the back garden and climb on the garden table and he became part of the family over time.
‘We were able to give him a good life.
‘It’s been horrible. There hasn’t been a day when we haven’t all cried.
‘I think its more the fact we didn’t get to say goodbye to him. One morning he was here and the next he was gone.’
Mr Watts said that on the night Boots was killed, he had gone out to play with the other cats who live on the street.
He explained: 'Boots spent a lot of time indoors and he also spent a lot of time outdoors. Everyone on our road owns a cat and he would normally go out and play out with them.
‘He went out about 8pm that night, I was in bed at about 10 o'clock and I heard my cat scream.
‘I went out and looked but couldn’t find him. A couple of days later we found him in a bush.
Boots death was captured on camera by one of Mr Watts neighbours, however he has refused to watch the footage.
He said: ‘I won’t watch it because I don't want to see my cat being killed.
'But from what my neighbour told me the they (the men) let their dogs of their leads to chase the cats. It was not just my cat.
‘Boot went under a car to hide and they waited and waited for him to come out. They were egged on by their owners.
‘Why would anyone want to do that. They are evil. It’s sick, it’s really sick.
‘Hopefully we can get them caught.’
After the killing of Boots, Mr Watts says that his neighbours are on edge and some are even keeping their pets indoors.
He said: ‘From what I have heard from my neighbours is that a lot of foxes and another cat have been found dead.
‘We think its the same people who have done it. My neighbours are frightened.
‘My neighbour next door has three or four cats and she won’t let them out.
The Watts family were not cat people before Boots ‘chose’ them.
Mr Watts explained: ‘Boots was a one-of-a-kind. He was the most friendly cat I have ever seen.
‘At first he was quite timid when he first started visiting the garden but he grew much friendlier.
‘We are not cat people at all, I have always grown up with dogs. But he chose us not the other way around.
‘I think we will get another cat, we would like to get another one because we think it is what Boots would have wanted.
‘We are going to go to our local RSPCA branch and adopt a stray and give a good life to another cat.'
RSPCA inspector Alan Browning said: ‘Our thoughts are with the cat’s owners and we’re urging anyone in the local community with information about what happened to contact our inspectorate appeal line on 0300 123 8018.'
It is an offence for an individual to commit an act which they know will cause a protected animal to suffer.
Owners, or those responsible for a dog, are also legally responsible for keeping dogs under proper control in any place.
To help the RSPCA continue rescuing, rehabilitating and rehoming animals in desperate need of care please visit: www.rspca.org.uk/give