The RSPCA has condemned an apparent attack on a cat which left the animal with severely scalded skin.
Bertie, who is believed to be five-years-old, was found in a garden in Mawsley on November 15.
Vets believe a boiling hot liquid was poured over the cat’s back – probably deliberately – which left it in agony.
Bertie is currently being looked after by foster carers where he is making a slow but steady recovery.
He has to wear a cone collar, takes antibiotics twice a day, has ointment applied twice a day and is given painkillers once a day, but he’s expected to make a full recovery.
Helen Watt, an adoptions and welfare co-ordinator at the RSPCA in Northamptonshire, said it was sickening to think someone would want to hurt Bertie.
She added: “Would they do that to their children? There’s no excuse for animal cruelty, there’s no reason why people should be treating animals like this, for fun or for kicks. It just has to stop.”
Bertie was found a matter of days after a cat was blown up in Wellingborough when a firework was strapped to its back, and Mrs Watt said the number of cases the RSPCA was dealing with was noticeably on the increase.
She said: “We are finding the cases of animals coming into our care phenomenal at the moment.
“All our foster carers are absolutely full. Over the last few months we have been inundated with cats that have been the subject of neglect or cruelty.”
Rebecca Reidie, who is looking after Bertie with her mum Sharon at their home in Northampton until a permanent owner can be found, said the cat was still tolerant of humans despite the terrible ordeal he had been through.
She said: “It’s nice he still wants human interaction even after all this.
“He’s a lovely little boy. He is so forgiving. He’s fighting it. He’s getting there very slowly.”
RSPCA spokesman Jacqui Kelly urged anyone with any information about the incident to call their cruelty line on 0300 1234999.
But she said: “We’ve had absolutely nobody come forward with any information so far.
“It’s sick, but he’s safe now, and that’s the main thing.”