South Bay neighbors on alert as family says pets targeted by pellet gun

Byby Amanda del Castillo via KGO logo
Wednesday, September 12, 2018
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Those living in San Jose's normally pet-friendly Parkview neighborhood say someone is shooting their pets with pellet guns.

SAN JOSE, Calif. (KGO) -- Those living in San Jose's normally pet-friendly Parkview neighborhood say someone is targeting their pets.

On Sunday, Lorraine Van Eaton was gardening in her front yard when she heard a cat's meow.

"It was Putter! But he wasn't putting put his foot down," she said. "He hadn't been there before, so he was obviously moving."

Six-year-old Putter had blood stains on his white fur and was struggling to make his way home. His owners live next door to Van Eaton.

"When I scooped him up, he had blood on his white fur and I was very concerned," she explained. "So, I got my daughter and said, 'We have to get Putter home, something is really wrong.'"

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Putter's owners, the Beyer family, then rushed their family cat to an emergency veterinarian.

Stephen Beyer shared x-rays with ABC7 News, showing pellet fragments lodged inside Putter's body.

To the family's surprise, x-rays revealed two pellets inside of Putter's body. Stephen explained a scab the family noticed about a month ago was actually another entry wound.

"Come to find out, it was another pellet," Stephen said. "So, there's definitely somebody local who's shooting animals."

The most recent shot missed Putter's head by two inches, and landed near his spine.

"His front leg's not operable. It's just not moving," he said. "So, we don't know yet. Time will tell if he'll be able to use it again."

He says since his daughter printed and posted alerts around the neighborhood, people have shared stories of their pets being targeted.

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Stephen explains why this behavior is alarming, "They do say that it starts with animals and then it- they escalate. This is definitely a mental issue that needs to be taken care of."

Some owners are now limiting their cat's outdoor time. Though they admit doing so isn't easing concern that someone in the neighborhood is shooting family pets.

Van Eaton explained, "We have two cats, and it's just a hard time understanding how someone can do something like that."

Putter's owners are counting their blessings, considering the outcome could have been much worse. "It was two inches from his head. It only took one head-shot and he would've been dead," Stephen told ABC7 News.

The Beyer's encourage anyone who might suspect a scab on their pet could be something more, to get an x-ray.

They've also created this GoFundMe page to assist in Putter's recovering, and to donate to animal welfare organizations.