Animal welfare officers have said a cat is lucky to be alive after it was shot in a “sickening attack”.
The Scottish SPCA believe the cat was shot with an airgun on the Auchmacoy Estate near Ellon.
It is the second time in recent years that an animal was targeted with an air rifle in the area.
When vets examined the cat, a shard of metal was found in its shoulder.
Scottish SCPA inspector Fiona Shand said: “It is hugely concerning that there has been yet another airgun attack in Scotland.
“There was a similar incident in Ellon two years ago but unfortunately we didn’t get any leads.
“The X-ray revealed an entry and exit wound indicating the feline was shot. The cat was incredibly lucky to have survived this sickening attack.
“Not only was this a very serious and cruel act, it was also a criminal offence which can be punished by a prison sentence and a fine.”
The charity is appealing for anyone with information to come forward.
Cat owners in the area are also being urged to be vigilant.
Lynn Gilbert, co-ordinator for Ellon and District Cats Protection, said: “This is an awful thing to happen, both to the cat and the owner.
“No-one wants their pet to be killed or injured.
“I can only hope they find those responsible.
“And I hope anyone who knows anything gets in touch with the Scottish SPCA.”