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Coyote or no? Investigators give mixed answers on case of cat found ripped in half

Residents say many pets missing in area
Posted at 12:58 AM, Sep 09, 2016
and last updated 2016-09-09 19:04:07-04

INDIANAPOLIS – Neighbors are nervous. But investigators now believe they know who or what was responsible for tearing a cat completely in half on the southeast side of the city recently.

Many people RTV6 spoke to believe the gruesome discovery believe a sick person is responsible.

But authorities now believe a different being is responsible, instead.

While officers at Indianapolis Animal Care and Control (IACC) say a cat torn in half is something they rarely see, they also have come to the conclusion that this wasn’t done by a human: Investigators believe it was done by a coyote or a group of coyotes.

The IACC says they’ve seen remains of ducks and geese in the area as well, suspected to be the aftermath of coyote attacks.

“A coyote will attack an animal many times and bite it right in the middle,” IACC’s Susan Hobbs said. “That’s where the organ meat is. That’s what they’re going for. It’s not unusual to see coyotes in that area and that is more than likely what happened.”

The IACC says the photos show how important it is to bring your animals inside when possible.

But not everyone agrees with the conclusion that a coyote did this.

The Department of Natural Resources (DNR) says there’s one key reason a coyote probably isn’t behind the attack: The cat’s remains were left behind.

“A lot of times with wild animals, if they kill a domestic animal like that, they’re going to take it off and eat it, and maybe feed it to their young,” DNR conservation officer Angela Goldman said. “So just the fact that the animal is still there partially eaten lends me to think it was not a coyote.”

Goldman also said coyotes get a much worse rap than they deserve.

“We get a lot more issues with feral dogs and loose dogs than we do with coyotes,” she said.

The DNR says it can’t make a definite determination on the attack, but investigators know the animal had been there a couple of days, which makes their job all the more difficult.

The cat had no microchip or tipped ear, which is common to identify cats that have been fixed.

We’ll be keeping a close eye on the issue and we’ll let you know when we learn more.

This has been an update to the story below, originally published Sept. 8.

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A southeast side resident came upon a gruesome site this week: a cat ripped completely in half.

Kendra Eldridge says she's horrified about the cat, and worried about the number of missing pets in her neighborhood.

She made the unnerving discovery on the side of the road near her home.

"It was very hard to tell whether this was something that was done either by an animal, or perhaps intentionally," Eldridge said. "That was the scariest part, that somebody could be out there and could have harmed this cat in any way."

An animal lover, Eldridge has cats of her own that she's rescued from shelters. She says people have reported pets in the area simply disappearing.

"We have quite a few animals that have come missing lately," she said. "A lot of us have small pets. We're trying to be extra vigilant with the issue of coyotes."

Eldridge says she, personally, doesn't think an animal could have torn the cat in half like it was. She hopes officials will get to the bottom of it.