'Shocking' animal 'torture' case prompts call for public help

There are dozens of animal cruelty cases that are yet to be solved. This is just one.

RSPCA investigators have shared shocking images of a tortured animal as a reminder of the grim work they are routinely forced to carry out.

Like in Australia, animal welfare frontline workers are frequently required to respond to terrible acts inflicted on animals. They hope that by sharing “shocking” details of what happened to a hedgehog in England over the weekend it encourages members of the community to step forward to help with this case and others.

In both England and Australia, there are dozens of cases that could be solved if members of the public stepped forward with helpful information.

The hedgehog was found in a public park, off Arkell Avenue in Holt. Source: RSPCA
The hedgehog was found in a public park at Holt in Norfolk. Source: RSPCA

What happened to the hedgehog in England?

The RSPCA believes a hedgehog, a species native to the country, was tortured and then left for dead on a footpath. Its legs were bound together with electrical tape, its spines had been trimmed, and blue paint had been sprayed across its back.

“It seems very much like he has been the victim of a premeditated attack. It's the most callous incident I've had to deal with in 16 years as an officer,” RSPCA inspector Ben Kirby said.

The hedgehog was found with its legs bound by electrical tape. Source: RSPCA
The hedgehog was found with its legs bound by electrical tape. Source: RSPCA

Members of public often hold key to cruelty cases

The hedgehog was found by a member of the public on Saturday evening in Holt, a suburb of Norfolk. The animal was rushed to the vet, but unfortunately, it had to be euthanised due to its appalling condition.

"This was a shocking discovery for the member of the public who found him to make, and we're really grateful to them for sounding the alarm and racing this poor hedgehog to a local vet,” Mr Kirby said.

Residents are now being urged to check their doorbell cameras and CCTV in the hope that someone happened to catch the perpetrators. But it's not just this isolated case where investigators need your help — incidents of animal cruelty can be reported to your local RSPCA or the police.

In the UK, the RSPCA is running a campaign called Cancel Out Cruelty, to “shine the light” on acts of cruelty its investigators are routinely faced with. Anyone who wishes to help fund the campaign can do so here.

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