A cat, shot at with an airgun, has miraculously survived even after it walked two miles with a pellet lodged in its chest, it was reported.

Gigio, the five-year-old tabby, was shot by an alleged criminal and was left with an injured lung and a ruptured diaphragm. Brave Gigio had covered two miles before he was rescued by his owner. His shocked owner Marie Lucchetta, 51, rushed him to the vet.

According to the Sun, the airgun pellets missed the grey cat's heart by millimetres. A life-saving surgery was performed on him.

The owner, speaking to the Sun, said she believes the cruel attack must have taken place on the edge of her village, or in neighbouring fields where Gigio spends his days roaming.

"He was absolutely terrified. He is very resilient and strong-willed," Marie heaped praise on her pet as she spoke to the Sun.

"Gigio could have gone hunting for mice in the fields behind our house or walked to the other end of the village."

"He has a habit of roaming several miles away and it looked as if he had been quite far away because of the state he was in when he got back home.

"I think if it had happened in the village someone would have heard something."

"I just can't believe this person could look the cat in the eyes and shoot him. It's just unbelievable," the stunned pet owner was quoted by the newspaper as saying.

"He is lucky to be alive," surgeon Pieter Nelissen, who operated on Gigio, told the paper.

"If the bullet had hit his heart or his lung there would have been nothing I could have done for him."

Animal Charity organisation RSPCA is investigating into the incident.