A CAT had to be put to sleep after being shot in the head by an air gun near Selby.

North Yorkshire Police and the RSPCA are investigating after Dusty was found covered in blood, unable to walk or stand, in Green Acres, Eggborough, on Monday.

Her owner Kate Brown took her to the vets where she was given pain relief and x-rayed, but had to be euthanised.

Kate said: "I’m devastated. It’s impossible to understand why someone would do something like this. I don’t think I’ll ever get my head around it.

"The way she died was awful. She was in a massive amount of pain and distress. Dusty was a much-loved and very loving cat and will be missed terribly by all of the family."

RSPCA inspector Thomas Hutton said Dusty had been shot by an air gun previously.

He said: "Clearly someone in the area has deliberated targeted her, causing a great deal of suffering to Dusty not once but twice, and her now her death.

"This is a criminal offence and carries a maximum sentence of six months in prison and an unlimited fine."

Anyone with information should phone the RSPCA on 0300 123 8018 or police on 101.