A PET cat was shot dead in a ‘brutal’ and ‘intentional’ attack.

The animal, called Boris, was killed while roaming in a field near Swinbrook Road in Carterton.

In a post on the Swinbrook Park Residents group on Facebook, the cat’s owner said she was ‘devastated’.

She wrote: “The vets are currently cooperating with the police providing as much forensic evidence as possible.

“We are struggling with the pain and loss of loosing Boris in such a brutal way, especially as his 11th birthday is today [August 22]. RIP Boris we miss you dearly and will always love you.”

It is thought the weapon was an air rifle, but police have not confirmed this.

In a further post, the owner added: “Boris received a single gun shot to his heart and was killed instantly, his rigor mortis had set in giving time of death Monday, August 20 at dusk.

“Weapon was a rifle (model unknown at this point) with a telescopic lens.

“Given the variables for this senseless act we can surmise that the perpetrator was in the vicinity of the entrance exit to the bridle path that runs alongside Carterton football ground.

“We can then surmise due to the size of weapon that the perpetrator drove in, parked and walked along the bridle path to the fields to lay in the undergrowth, prepared to perform this crime.

“It is becoming very clear with the information gathered so far that this was not an accident, it was intent to kill.”

The community has condemned the killing, with commenters on Facebook describing it as ‘shocking’ and ‘beyond comprehension’.

Thames Valley Police confirmed that it received reports of a cat killing, and sent officers to patrol and advise residents.