The beast of Lytham's tragic demise

THE Beast of Lytham is no more. The elderly animal, which was captured by the RSPCA on Sunday, has been put to sleep on medical advice from vets.

It has been revealed the fabled beast, which has spent the last month wandering around homes in Lytham, was an elderly fox rather than a rare cat – as previously suspected by Fylde feline experts.

A Lytham resident trapped the beast in her home before alerting animal collectors from the RSPCA to allow it to be captured.

It is the second time mother-of-two Suki Woodhouse had found the animal inside her home on North House Lane, close to Cypress Point.

She said: “We had the doors open at the back and it just walked into the house. It tried going right through the house and walking out the front but my husband, Steve, shut the door and phoned the RSPCA.

“It was so docile, we gave it food and it could barely eat it. When the collector came he put thick gloves on but all he had to do was gesture towards the cage and it walked in.”

Mrs Woodhouse described the animal’s scruffy appearance as “weird” and says she was quite surprised to find it was a fox.

She added: “Its fur was coming off and it was missing from all of its knees, where there was just skin. It had a white muzzle and its body shape looked nothing like a fox.”

RSPCA animal collection officer Nick Green took the fox to a nearby vets who recommended the animal was put to sleep.

He said: “It was a very ill, elderly fox – certainly the oldest I have ever seen – which had skin problems and not a lot of fur.

“The fox was gangly and its eyes were glazed. The vets decided it was best to put it down.”