11/27/2014 08:02 EST | Updated 01/27/2015 05:59 EST

Limping cat leads SPCA in Montreal to seek cruelty suspect

The Montreal SPCA is trying to discover who is responsible for shooting a cat with a BB gun.

The animal welfare agency received the adult cat on Nov. 19, after someone found it and brought it in.

The cat, which agency workers named Maggie, was found in the Saint-Laurent borough, between Emilie-Bélanger Street and Poirier Boulevard.

“Since she suffered from an obvious limp, the SPCA’s veterinary team examined her and ordered that Maggie be sent for X-rays,” said the SPCA in a statement.

“Upon analysis of the X-rays, the veterinary team discovered that Maggie sustained a serious injury – she had a bullet from a BB gun lodged in her hind leg and required major surgery.”

The SPCA said it has now launched an investigation and is asking anyone with any information to come forward.

“The fact is that someone chose to inflict this type of pain and suffering on Maggie, by shooting her with a BB gun – which is horrifying to think about. We absolutely want to find the person responsible for this, and our inspection department is working hard to do so,” said Alanna Devine, the director of animal advocacy at the Montreal SPCA.

Devine added that an animal cruelty conviction could lead to a sentence of as much as five years behind bars..

With no identification, the SPCA said it has not been able to track down Maggie’s family.

The cat will recover from surgery in a foster home until it is ready to be adopted.