A cat has died after a car driver “deliberately” mounted a kerb and ran him over.
Two-year-old Walter survived the hit, which happened on Thursday.
However, he was severely injured and was put to sleep yesterday.
His owner, Angie Wright, said she and her family had been left heartbroken and angry by what had happened.
Angie said she was in her front garden on Thursday when she saw Walter wander up the road.
Later in the afternoon, her neighbour came to let her know that he had been struck by a car while he was sitting on the pavement near a hedge.
“She said a car came down the road in the opposite direction, bumped onto the kerb and cleaned him up, and drove off,” Angie told LeicestershireLive.
“My neighbour said there was no reason for them to have done that.”
After being told of the hit, Angie ran up the road to collect Walter and check how badly he was injured.
She got to the site of the incident, which was the corner of Glenmore Avenue and Park Rise, in Shepshed, but at first, could not find her beloved pet.
Then a neighbour reported seeing Walter “just crawling to try and get away and hide”.
“When we went to look, he had disappeared,” said Angie.
“I then heard meowing, but thought, ‘That’s not Walter’. What had happened was that another cat was sat with Walter and meowing to alert us to where he was.”
Angie found Walter taking refuge in a hedge in someone’s garden, and rushed him to the vet’s.
Walter had been seriously injured, with a broken pelvis and a fracture at the bottom of his spine.
His bladder had also stopped working properly, and his front claws had become detached from when he had been dragging himself away from the incident.
The vet offered to operate, however, there was no guarantee he would survive, and, if he did, there was little chance that he would ever be able to walk or use his bladder independently again.
“I didn’t want to put him through that pain,” said Angie.
Walter was put to sleep yesterday afternoon.
“We’re heartbroken, but I’m also really angry,” she added.
“If he had gone into the road and someone had run him over and it was an accident, I could accept that.
“But it’s the fact that someone had done this deliberately.
“He wouldn’t have seen it coming. He was just licking his paw.
“We’re all heartbroken because we all loved Walter.”
Angie said she had not yet made her grandchildren aware of Walter’s death.
“There are little ones, three to five, and we just haven’t told them yet because they will be heartbroken too,” she said.
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Angie said she was concerned for the safety of people living in the area – particularly youngsters – with an apparently dangerous driver taking to the roads
“This week it was a cat, but next week it could be a child,” she said.
“The driver couldn’t have seen what was around that corner, and it was close to when the kids would leave school.”
The vehicle that hit Walter was described as a purple Peugeot-like car.
Angie said she had already been given the name of a person who might have been driving at the time.
She has been in touch with Leicestershire Police about the incident and said she would be filing an official report as soon as she had collected more information.