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Family cat shot by arrow in north Edmonton prompts animal cruelty investigation: ‘Milo is a miracle’

Click to play video: 'Edmonton’s animal cruelty investigation unit overwhelmed with cases, seeks public’s help'
Edmonton’s animal cruelty investigation unit overwhelmed with cases, seeks public’s help
A dog found dead with its paws bound together, a cat shot with an arrow: these are just two of the cases the new animal cruelty investigation unit of Edmonton Police Service is looking into. As Sarah Ryan reports, the cases are mounting and investigators are hoping residents can help get justice for the innocent animals – Jan 11, 2023

A family cat named Milo is recovering after being shot with an arrow while missing from his family’s home in north Edmonton.

On Dec. 31, the black, two-year-old male cat got outside the home near 164 Avenue and 59 Street.

His owner Amy Collins said during a commotion when letting the dog out, Milo snuck out as well. He’s gotten out before, but never stayed out overnight.

“It was alarming when he didn’t come home,” Collins said from her home in the Hollick-Kenyon neighbourhood on Tuesday night.

Collins said she posted on the North Side Hub Facebook group, as well as local pages for lost pets, but no one reported seeing the cat.

A family cat named Milo is recovering with his owner Amy Collins after being shot with an arrow while missing from his family’s home in north Edmonton in January 2023. Global News

He did not come home for more than a week.

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On Sunday, Jan. 8, shortly after 8:30 p.m., Collins said she was upstairs when the dog started barking as if someone was on the front porch.

The kids downstairs opened the door and the cat walked inside — with an arrow sticking through the middle of his back.

“It just went chaotic from there,” Collins said, explaining her kids erupted in tearful hysterics.

“When I finally came down to see what was going on… It was pretty disturbing.”

The cat, however, had more important things on his mind.

“Milo came in and went straight to his food dish and ate. It didn’t even faze him.”

Collins said she was speechless. The kids were losing their minds while the cat was sauntering around the house as if nothing had happened.

“I didn’t know what to do or what to say. Should I pull it out? It was moving freely back and forth, so I figured it wasn’t stuck in there.”

The cat was strolling around nonchalantly, banging the arrow off walls and furniture. Collins said she gingerly reached out to touch what she said she’s since been told looked like a crossbow arrow.

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“I just lightly pulled it and it just fell out. So it was pretty easy to get it out.”

A family cat named Milo is recovering after being shot with an arrow while missing from his family’s home in north Edmonton in January 2023. Courtesy: Amy Collins

Milo didn’t start bleeding, but was immediately taken to a veterinarian for treatment and found to be suffering from a fever and dehydration.

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Collins said the vet figured the arrow was in the cat for a day or two before he came home.

Milo is expected to make a full recovery.

“It’s a very rare thing to see that it missed the spine just by millimetres and any internal organs, any arteries,” Collins said.

“It literally went through the little set of muscle that’s between the spine and the arteries. The whole arrow went through that whole muscle and that was it. Nothing else was damaged.

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The wound is being left open to drain before being stitched up and Collins said the cat is going to the vet every day for bandage changes, plus he’ll be wearing a cone for at least two weeks.

Collins said the cat is under 24-hour supervision but is full of energy and doesn’t seen too bothered by the ordeal.

“He has some pain meds that sedate him a little bit — which is nice because then he’ll lay down — but as soon as those wear off, he is up and at it.”

A family cat named Milo is recovering after being shot with an arrow while missing from his family’s home in north Edmonton in January 2023. Courtesy: Amy Collins

The Edmonton Police Service’s Animal Cruelty Investigation Unit is now looking for the public’s help to identify the person or people responsible for the animal abuse.

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“Where that animal was during an eight-day period is a mystery we’ll need some assistance with,” Sgt. Olena Fedorovich told reporters at a news conference on Wednesday afternoon.

She added that investigators say what happened to Milo “likely was not an accident.”

“We don’t know the dynamics behind this happening,” Fedorovich said, adding that “animal cruelty in and of itself is horrific.”

“We’re talking about intentional harm — malicious harm — of animals, of living, breathing beings that have feelings.”

READ MORE: Edmonton police investigate dead dog found in Meadows park with paws bound

Fedorovich said there is a link between animal cruelty and violence towards humans. She said when police uncover cases of animal cruelty, their investigation sometimes reveals that an offender has been violent towards other humans, and vice versa.

Collins said Milo is more than a pet — he’s a beloved family member adored not just by her kids, but by her extended family and even neighbours.

“He definitely didn’t deserve what happened to him. He’s never, ever been mean.

It’s not known who shot Milo or why. Not everyone loves pets wandering into their yard and Collins understands that, but said there are options: people can call Animal Care and Control, or try to figure out who the owner is by posting online.

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“There’s different ways to go about it than harming somebody’s family pet.”

The arrow removed from Milo, a cat owned by a north Edmonton family. Courtesy: Amy Collins

The news of the investigation looking into what happened to Milo the cat comes just a few weeks after another disturbing incident of animal cruelty involving a family cat.

On Dec. 21, police said they were also investigating the violent killing of a pet cat by several young men back in October.

Collins said Milo doesn’t ever wander far, so she fears whoever hurt her cat lives in the area.

“A normal person doesn’t go around hurting animals,” Collins said. “So I hope whoever did this gets the help that they need.

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“I hope they don’t do it to anybody else’s pet, because it was pretty traumatizing for my kids and we’re still dealing with it.”

In the meantime, the family will be keeping a close eye on making sure he doesn’t slip out again.

Investigators are asking anyone with information to contact the EPS at 780-423-4567 or #377 from a mobile phone.

Anonymous information can also be submitted to Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477 or online.

— With files from Phil Heidenreich, Global News

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