A CAT savaged by a fox in a Poole back garden was lucky to survive after suffering multiple wounds including a nine-inch gash.

The treasured 19-year-old pet had seven separate wounds and needed 50 stitches after the attack, said his owners, retired couple Peter and Melody Grange.

Mrs Grange said she believed the ginger tabby Willum must have been attacked in the garden of their home in Coy Pond Road in Branksome as he was too old to go any further.

They found him bloodied and in a sorry state on the morning of Sunday, October 3.

She told the Daily Echo: “There were tears on both sides of him – it must have been holding him in its mouth to tear him like that.”

She added: “The vet was absolutely appalled when he saw him. He said he must have put up a hell of a fight.”

She said they’d seen foxes in their garden before – but they’d never come after the cat.

“For this to happen to an old pussycat like that is heartbreaking,” she added.

The danger of urban foxes has been highlighted in the news in recent months following the fox attack on nine-month-old twins as they slept in their East London home in June this year Just weeks later, a Poole family’s pet chihuahua was killed by a fox in broad daylight in the garden of a home in Courthill Road, Parkstone.

Mrs Grange added: “We wanted to let people know there’s a killer fox around and to keep their pets indoors at night.

“It’s a very, very nasty thought.”