SPOKANE, Wash.- A cat is recovering after she was shot with a pellet gun this weekend.
It's a case of animal cruelty that has the family fearful whoever did this, will do it again, maybe to your pet next.
The owners of the cat say she was a therapy pet who has helped them through some dark days.
"Last June, June 6th actually, we tragically lost my son's grandfather Ron Weston," Barbara Weston. "He was a retired firefighter from Spokane, an engineer, he was even a high school teacher at one point. It was a very sudden loss."
KHQ covered the crash in 2018.
Those left behind were distraught, especially Ron's littlest buddy.
"My son and his grandfather were best friends," Barbara said. "Whenever they were with each other, they were just two peas in a pod and just went everywhere together."
Five-year-old Mac took the death hard, struggling to even understand it all. His mother thought a therapy animal, a cat, could help him cope.
"A month after his death, my son and I had been going to the humane society, and we decided to get a pet for him to help with his grief," she said. "We ended up with this black cat named Charolette."
And because of Charolette, Mac began to smile again.
"It was extremely therapeutic for my son," Barbara said.
But then, over the weekend they found Charolette in horrible shape. They rushed her to the vet who did emergency surgery. They told the family their cat had been shot.
"They gave us the bullet," she said. "It is a pellet from a pellet gun."
Charolette will likely have to have her leg amputated, procedures that will leave the family with thousands of dollars in bills they had no way to prepare for. But because Charolette has given them the priceless gift of comfort, they say they'd do anything for her.
As for whoever did this, Barbara just hopes they know their target wasn't just a cat.
"I want to get the message out that they did something more profound to my family than just injuring a pet," she said. "That this was a grievance for my son."
The family did report the case of animal cruelty to police but were referred to SCRAPS. They are waiting for an investigator to call them back.
If you want to help this family visit: https://www.gofundme.com/charolette-the-cats-vet-bill