Humane Services in St. John's is warning people after a stray cat was found with a snare around its neck — right in the centre of the city.

A resident who was caring for homeless cats in the Pennywell Road area noticed an extremely thin cat hanging around and became concerned about his health.

The cat, who is named Muffy, was live-trapped and taken to the city's Animal Care and Adoption Centre on Higgins Line on Dec. 7.  

That's where staff discovered he actually had a snare around his neck.

"It wasn't embedded in his skin, so he very luckily didn't sustain any damage from the snare, but it was a very scary situation and an eye-opener," said shelter veterinarian Heather Hillier. 

"Muffy came from from city centre, the Pennywell Road area, so it wasn't an outlying rural area at all. It was right in the centre of the city."

Hillier said there are a lot of hazards for pets who are allowed to roam, including vehicle accidents, animal attacks and traps set for rodents. 

While it isn't known where or when the cat was snared, it could have been deliberately set to cause harm to a domestic animal.

"Unfortunately there can be malicious intent in those behaviours as well," said Hillier.

The city is advising animal owners to keep their pets inside or safely confined to their properties.

Hillier said the city operates a 24 hour pickup service, so anyone encountering an animal in distress should call 311 to report it.

With files from the St. John's Morning Show