A LOST cat from Devon which turned up 550 miles away in Fife may have travelled on a Navy ship, animal rescuers say.
The SSPCA say there is a small chance Meatball could have made the epic journey from Plymouth to Rosyth after smuggling on board a ship.
Meatball, found by a member of the public in Rosyth on 14 February, is microchip-tagged to an address in Plymouth.
The two-year-old has spent several weeks on his own, and had to have a hind leg amputated due to an injury.
The charity says the most likely explanation is the owner has since moved to Scotland or the cat has been bought by someone else, but there is a small chance a ship’s cat may have travelled on a ship bound for Rosyth.
An SSPCA spokeswoman said: “There’s MoD dockyards in Plymouth and Rosyth so we whoever owns him might be related to the services.”
A member of the public found Meatball in his garden shed, suffering from an injuries to his back leg and tail.
The black and white cat was thin and appeared to have been outside for several weeks, the SSPCA said.
Animal Rescue Officer Robert Ward said, “Poor Meatball was in a bad way when he was found taking refuge in a shed at a property near Ferry Toll Road, Rosyth.
“As well as his obvious injuries he was also thin and matted so we think he has been straying for quite a while.
“It’s highly likely that Meatball’s owner has relocated to Scotland and lives nearby, but we can’t rule out the possibility that he may have travelled from Plymouth to Rosyth by boat.
“We’ve sent a letter to the address in Plymouth which is registered on his micro-chip, but we also need to find out whether someone locally owns him.
“Meatball is a very affectionate and loving cat and we’d like to think someone is missing him.
“His owner may be shocked to find he has sadly lost a leg, but he’s coping really well and there’s no reason why he can’t go on to live a full and active life.”