IN one of the most despicable cases of animal cruelty witnessed in Kerry in recent times, a five month old kitten and a crossbreed pup were scalded with boiling water and left to starve in the Ardfert area.
The tortured animals were found wandering together in the north Kerry village by a concerned resident who immediately took them to the Animal Heaven rescue shelter in Killarney, where owner Suzanne Gibbons was horrified by the deplorable injuries inflicted on them.
She said the dog is now so traumatised by what happened that every time he hears water flowing from a tap he shivers and wets the floor.
So angry is Suzanne at the treatment of the defenceless animals - later named Bonnie and Clyde - that she has offered a €1,000 reward for information that will help catch the culprits.
When the cat and dog arrived at her shelter they were covered in open sores, scabs and puss, and subsequent tests confirmed that it was boiling water that had caused the horrific burning. Most disturbing is the fact that the injuries were not accidental, and that those responsible were unlikely to be children as the injuries were consistent with someone deliberately pouring the scalding water along their backs.
"If it was a child who did this, they would probably have thrown the water and it would have splashed. This was someone with a steady hand who knew exactly what they were doing. They purposely poured the boiling water down along their backs," she said. "I am not going to let this lie until those responsible are found and pay for what they have done, and that's why I'm offering a reward of €1,000 for information. I'm convinced someone knows who's responsible but for some reason they're not coming forward."
Suzanne says that anyone with information can contact her in confidence on 086 1076729 or go directly to their local garda station. She is also appealing to anyone who would like to home Bonnie and Clyde to get in touch, preferably someone who is willing to allow them live inside while also offering plenty of room to run around outside.