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Pensioner's thanks after fundraising page set up to pay vet bill of shot cat

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Nellie McGinley at home with Lucky the cat

Nellie McGinley at home with Lucky the cat

Nellie McGinley at home with Lucky the cat

A Londonderry grandmother said she is overwhelmed by the kindness of strangers after a fundraising page was set up to help pay a vet bill for her cat that was shot.

Nellie McGinley was left heartbroken after Lucky was shot with a pellet gun and left for dead.

The 79-year-old, from the Currynierin area of the city, found her two-year-old pet bleeding at her gate last Wednesday night.

She rushed the cat to a nearby vet who, after an x-ray, discovered 25 pellets inside his body. Nellie faces a three-week wait to see if the pellets have given Lucky lead poisoning, which would eventually kill him.

Nellie said: "Over the weekend we didn't know if Lucky would live or die. He was heavily sedated for the pain and when I petted him I could feel the pellets under his skin.

"He also lost an eye, which is just awful. He has come round a little bit now.

"They removed a pellet from his head and sent it away for analysis. If it is lead in the pellets he will die or have to be put down. My heart is broken just thinking about it."

Nellie was allowed to take Lucky home on Monday.

The pensioner added: "He can't walk around, he's still so weak, so I've had to buy him an indoor toilet. But he is happy to be home in his own bed.

"I have to take him back and forth to the vet for medication, jabs and checks.

"The vet did warn me that he is not out of the woods yet and there is a possibility that they might have to put him down because of lead poisoning. I don't even want to think about that.

"At the moment, we are just sitting here together at home."

Nellie said she has been overwhelmed by the kindness of strangers who have donated money to a Go Fund Me page to help her with vet bills.

"I can't thank everyone enough," she added. "I'm in total shock at the kindness. People I don't know have been helping me, donating money.

"I have had people call to the house with flowers and to give me money for petrol to take me out to the vet and back.

"I've had people calling me on the phone offering support. I was so worried about meeting the vet's bill, it really was adding to my stress, but I wanted Lucky to be okay, so I vowed to find it somewhere.

"People are so good and I am so grateful for their help."

Police are investigating the attack on Lucky and branded the shooting as "despicable".

To donate to help Nellie with Lucky's vet bills, visit www.gofundme.com

Belfast Telegraph