The Hawke's Bay SPCA is trying to find a Napier cat-hater who seems to be illegally using traps to catch people's pets.

A pet owner in Taradale has been left distraught after their black-and-white cat Jazz came home on Monday with a leg-hold trap attached to her lower jaw.

Jazz is now recovering at home in the Hetley Crescent area, after a vet was able to remove the trap, which fortunately, only caused flesh wounds.

SPCA manager Bruce Wills says staff have been door-knocking in the area to try find out who is setting the traps.


He says people usually know who is the local cat-hater, but in this case, they have no idea who it is.

Bruce Wills says setting leg-hold traps is not normal behaviour for someone who just dislikes cats wandering onto their property.

He says someone has be extreme in their views to set traps, knowing the damage they inflict on cats.

Bruce Wills says they will take court action if traps are used illegally. A Palmerston North man was sentenced last week, and fined five-hundred dollars for capturing a pet cat in a serrated leg hold trap.

He says the use of traps is a complicated issue. Small non-serrated leg-hold traps are legal, but they cannot be set within 150 metres of a dwelling and where there's a probable risk of catching a companion animal.