One of Norwich's best-loved cats, Pumpkin, who has become known for his regular visits to a city suburb Tesco needs an operation worth £2,500 to save his life.

The cat, who was banned from Tesco Express in Acres Way, Thorpe Marriott in 2019, is suffering from hyperthyroidism causing a rapid heartbeat and increased rate of metabolism.

His thyroid level, which should be between 15 and 40, is currently 184.7 meaning he needs specialist surgery in order to survive.

Norwich Evening News:

Unable to afford the expensive radioactive iodine treatment, Pumpkin's owner Jo Harding has turned to more than 4,500 cat fans on his Facebook page in an attempt to raise the funds.

At the time of writing, the PayPal funding page has raised £1,830 in just over a day.

Mrs Harding, who works at Natures Menu in Snetterton, said: "Unbelievable, we thought the treatment was not an option because of money.

"It's great news because he was not responding to his medicine and the vet said his new medication wasn't going to give him much of a chance.

"I'm now booking the appointment, he wouldn't have had a chance beforehand.

"We're not sure what the outcome will be but now he's got the best chance of making another five years."

Norwich Evening News:

READ MORE: Norwich flying ace's medals could raise more than £60,000 at auction

She said she almost closed down Pumpkin's page a month ago after he stopped visiting the mini supermarket, but was persuaded not to.

Mrs Harding added: "He stopped going to Tesco a while back, I'm not sure if something happened to him.

"So I thought I would close it down as he wasn't doing much anymore, but loads of people told me not to.

"I suppose everything happens for a reason.

"We've been overwhelmed by the generosity."

Pumpkin was a street cat who was rescued by Mrs Harding and her husband Lee between the ages of five and seven and has since lived with them for five years.

Anyone wishing to donate to Pumpkin's fundraiser can do so here.