Ottawa police say a number of cat deaths in the city were the result of predatory attacks, most likely by coyotes.
Police opened an investigation this month after four cats with signs of abuse were found mutilated.
A total of seven cats have now been found dead, with the most recent death discovered in Nepean on June 21, police said in a press release on Thursday.
One of the deceased cats was sent to the University of Guelph Animal Health Laboratory in Kemptville, Ontario, just outside Ottawa.
An autopsy on Thursday revealed that the cause was a predatory attack, police said.
“It is a relief to know that there is no person behind these murders,” said Bruce Roney, president of the Ottawa Humane Society, in a press release.
“But it doesn’t change the fact that these cats suffered a horrific death and that the safest place for a cat is inside.”
Nina Berry’s cat Naz Naz disappeared on June 10th. His body was found three days later in a nearby field. (Supplied by Nina Berry)
Keep animals indoors
The company had offered a $ 5,000 reward for information that would aid the police investigation into the cats’ deaths. It is said that the reward will now go to life-saving care and housing for Ottawa animals.
“Our hearts go out to the people who have lost loved ones in the past few weeks,” said Roney.
The police and animal welfare recommend animal owners to leave their animals indoors.