A string of cat attacks are being investigated after two pets were found with their ears cut off and another was swung around by its tail in Norwich .
Norfolk Police said they had received five reports of attacks on cats in the city over the past two weeks.
One of five incidents involved a man seen putting a cat into a holdall bag, before dropping the bag and running off when confronted by a member of the public on Tuesday in Berners Street.
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The next day a woman called police to report seeing a man swinging a cat by its tail against a garage in the Philadelphia Lane area, before running off with the animal towards Pengrove Road.
A cat's body parts were also found on allotments in the Woodcock Road area on two occasions in recent weeks, police added.
Lottie Sparkes, head nurse at Taverham Vets which treated two of the cats mutilated in the attacks, described their injuries as "horrific".
“Their ears had been chopped right down to the base of the head, and the first cat had a really nasty laceration across its back, which was obviously quite a really big open wound,” she said.
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"But that was luckily able to be stitched back together. The second cat that we had on Wednesday had just had his ears lacerated, but they were actually a lot closer to the head and on to his face, but he didn't have any other injuries."
Ms Sparkes said she had never seen such injuries in her 10 years in the job.
"We often see quite bad injuries and wounds from various dogs impaling themselves, cats impaling themselves on fences and things, but nothing like this with human mutilation to animals," she said
Ms Sparkes said they believe one of the cats is a stray and pledged to rehome him within the veterinary practice's team if no owner claims him.
He was named Vincent van Gough after the artist who famously cut off his own ear.
Jordan Smith, a vet who treated Vincent at the surgery, said the team have been "deeply saddened and mortified by these attacks", but they are thankful that the cat still trusts humans.
Bubba, the other cat treated at the practice, is doing "amazing" in his recovery, owner Georgina Barnes said.
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"Since Bubba came home and we found him in the state he was it's been an emotional rollercoaster, mixed emotions – worry, anger, terrified, completely heartbroken," she said.
She added: "It's been overwhelming all of the support from complete strangers and the donations to help him get through this and the amazing work the vets have done."
In response to the attacks, Taverham Vets issued a warning to pet owners in Norwich on .
“We advise that everyone remain vigilant, keep your cats safely indoors if you can – especially at night, and if you find an injured cat, call your vet and seek treatment straight away,” the post read.
PC Shaun Quinn said: "These are shocking incidents and whilst we cannot determine at this stage exactly how all the cats came to be injured and whether all the incidents are linked, we know they will cause some distress to members of the community.
"We are conducting a number of enquiries and liaising with the RSPCA, as well as increasing patrols in the area."
Additional reporting by PA