A LEADING cat welfare charity has reiterated its call for a change in the law after one was killed by a car in Barrow.

A ginger cat died from its injuries after being found by the side of Park Road last month.

But it was not microchipped and its owner has not been found.

A spokeswoman for Cats Protection UK said it was saddened to hear the news.

"It is particularly tragic when a cat which has died in a road accident is not microchipped," she said.

"This means their owner may never be aware of what has happened, and may continue an unnecessary and distressing search for their pet.

"Cats Protection is calling for a change in the law to require all owned cats, like dogs, to be microchipped.

"Microchipping is a safe, permanent and cost-effective method of identification which ensures cats can be reunited with their owner should they go missing.

"It means lost cats are not mistaken as strays and taken in by rehoming charities, and also ensures owners can be notified if their cat has been injured or killed in a road accident.

"Cats are free roaming so microchipping in order to identify their owner makes absolute sense."

Despite the efforts of bystanders Helen Greenhalf and Julie Marklew, the cat died after breaking both his back legs and tail.

Ms Greenhalf, who owns Roundhills Kennels and Cattery, said at the time it was not microchipped and added it could have been one of a number of feral cats she sees near Park Road.

"Cats are much-loved pets, and we believe that it’s unfair the law makes microchipping compulsory for dogs but not for cats," the charity spokeswoman added.

"Compulsory microchipping of cats would create parity between the two most popular companion animals."

The law says killing another person’s cat is classed as criminal damage, according to Cats Protection. Cats are also protected under the Animal Welfare Act, which says it is an offence to kill or harm them.

Visit www.cats.org.uk/speakingupforcats