Cat lovers in Ipswich have produced a map detailing where their pets have gone missing, after nearly 200 cats have disappeared in a matter of weeks across Ipswich and Stowmarket.
The cat map, produced by the Facebook campaign group Ipswich Missing Cats, has been given to Suffolk police and details the hotspots for the missing moggies across Ipswich.
Last week the figure stood at 160 cats missing across Ipswich and Stowmarket, but Missing Cats Ipswich believe that has now increased to 180, with 109 having disappeared in Ipswich alone.
Areas where the most animals have been reported missing include the IP3 area around Holywells and Landseer, East Ipswich between University Campus Suffolk and Derby Road rail station, and Stoke Park.
Cats have also been reported missing as far as Bramford and Martlesham Heath.
Some angry residents have had their pets return home having been tortured, including suffering burnt whiskers, chunks of fur ripped out, and severe bruising.
A reward fund for information which leads to the successful prosecution of a perpetrator currently stands at £1,700, after a business in Hadleigh donated £500 and Facebook group members contributed a further £200 to the existing £1,000 reward.
Deni Parkes, founder of the Ipswich Missing Cats group, said: “After meeting with all admin, we have new developments in the pipeline. Firstly, we are going to apply for charity status, so the pledge for a reward fund can begin in earnest. We will also have a website up and running soon.”
Other plans include liasing with vets and animal shelters for unidentified cats, chipping events for residents to ID tag their pets, and plans to run a neighbourhood watch scheme to keep a lookout on cats across Ipswich.
Ms Parkes has also urged anyone without Facebook whose cat has gone missing to get in touch via a friend or relative, and alert the RSPCA or police.
She added: “I hope in time, we can get all necessary agencies and resources under one roof so to speak, where we are connected and can rapidly find an owner, as well as deter those that might take our cats. The more we highlight the welfare of our cats, who are a part of our family, the more progress we will make.”