A HEARTBROKEN owner is looking for answers after her cat returned home with half his whiskers missing.

Animal-lover Sandy Collins was devastated to find her cat’s whiskers cut off on one side of his face after he had been outside exploring.

And although three-year-old Shredder is an adventurous animal, he was left wary after the incident earlier this week saw him lose a vital part of his senses.

“It’s like the equivalent of having an ear infection,” the devastated owner explained.

“Whiskers help with balance, navigation and helping with narrow spaces – I was worried he’d go outside and get stuck because he couldn’t tell how small gaps were anymore.”

The Dearham dog walker has recently moved up to the area from Liverpool, and is shocked by the welcome.

She said: “I thought it was a lovely area, but now I’m starting to wonder where it is I’ve moved to.

“[Shredder] had been out for the day, and when he came in I noticed half his whiskers had gone.

“I just feel so bad for him. He won’t have just got his head stuck because it’s a clean, blunt cut across them – someone will have had to hold him down and cut them.”

Ms Collins is now nervous to let her beloved pet outdoors, letting him outside for only a short while at a time, hoping he’s never hurt again.

Commenting on how it felt to see her cat’s whiskers cut, she said: “It was totally gutting – I just felt so bad for him, and I don’t understand how anybody could do that to an animal.

“It’s just disgusting, horrid and nasty, I just don’t get it. I hope whoever did it feels embarrassed and ashamed, and realises what they’ve done is totally wrong.

“If he was being a nuisance, a cup of water thrown at him or something like that would have made sense, but to hold him down and cut his whiskers off is just disgusting.”

Ms Collins also urged other owners to be wary, not wanting anyone else’s animals to be harmed.

“Everybody needs to know about this, just because you don’t like something doesn’t mean you can harm it in this way.

“I’d just like people to be aware and an eye on their cats, and let the police know if they see someone walking around with scissors and cats’ whiskers in their hand!”

Ms Collins said she had reported the incident to the police, and urged anyone who spots anyone acting suspiciously around their animals, or who notices a similar attack on their pet, to do the same.

A spokesman for Cumbria Police said: "It was reported to the police on Monday, March 30, a victim from Dearham found her cat to have had its whiskers cut off.

"This has happened sometime between 7am and midday. No further action is being taken."