1 held after kitten shot with arrow

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The Humane Society of Louisiana has set up a crowd funding account to cover veterinary fees after an eight to nine-month-old kitten was found shot and injured by a hunting arrow. St. Charles Parish residents Dolly and John Dicken contacted the Humane Society after they found the black short-haired cat wounded in front of their house around 8:30 p.m. Monday. The cat was wounded by an arrow that had pierced the fur and soft tissue of his chest cavity.

After making the gruesome discovery, the couple rushed “Max” to a veterinary clinic in LaPlace where he received emergency medical care. According to the veterinarian, the arrow had remarkably managed to pass through the fur in front of the cat’s chest cavity, but did not hit any organs. The feline’s rib cage, veins and arteries were also missed by the shot, which veterinarians say would have proved fatal for the kitten.

The arrow was made of an aluminum carbon fiber alloy with a “field tip” as a point, which is a type commonly used in bow hunting. 

Veterinarians had to unscrew the field tip to extract the shaft from the kitten without causing any further damage tot he animal. After they drained the wound, Max was stitched up and is still under medical supervision.

The next day, Dolly and her friends canvassed the neighborhood in an effort to alert neighbors about their Monday find. They distributed fliers that offered a $200 reward for the arrest and conviction of those responsible for shooting the kitten.

A break in the early investigation happened on Wednesday when a neighbor of the couple turned himself in to authorities, and was subsequently booked on charges of aggravated cruelty to animals by the local sheriff’s office. The man, Cody Dupre, remains in the parish lock-up where his bond was set at $30,000, according to arrest records.

After Dupre was arrested, sheriff’s deputies interviewed the couple and took possession of the arrow. During that interview, it was determined by deputies that the couple allowed Max to roam outside, which led to the Dickens being issued a citation for allowing an animals at large due to a violation of leash laws.

According to the Human Society, Max’s medical bills for emergency treatment and medical aftercare were approaching $1,000. In order to pay for the services, the Dickens family and friends created a GoFundMe campaign that was able to quickly raise $900 for 31 donors in less than 24 hours. That GoFundMe page can be found at

“Although traumatized by these rapidly unfolding events, we are grateful that Max was not severely injured, and we sincerely appreciate the support we have received from friends, neighbors and strangers, many of whom contributed to Max’s medical bills.  Because we all feel that Max was very lucky and fortunate to have survived this attack, we are subtracting one life from his imaginary nine allocated lives,” says John Dicken, who held Max while his wife Dolly drove them both to the vet clinic on Monday night. 

“We, too, are grateful that Max survived this unwarranted attack and that the Luling community has rallied so quickly to aid both the Dickens and Max and helped identify the person responsible for this criminal act. Recently, we are seeing more and more individuals and neighborhoods fighting back against crimes against animals, with positive results,” says Jeff Dorson, HSL Executive Director.  The Humane Society of Louisiana works closely with other humane organizations and law enforcement agencies to help enforce local and state anti-cruelty statutes.

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