Traces of what could be human blood was found on one of a number of stray cats
A stray cat has been identified as the prime suspect in the attempted murder of an elderly woman found bleeding profusely in her home.
Mayuko Matsumoto, 82, was found by her daughter with about 20 cuts to her face at her home in Mifune, southern Japan.
Police launched an attempted murder investigation after seeing her wounds, some of them severe, according to broadcaster RKK.
Her daughter told RKK: "When we found her, blood covered everything above her chin. Her face was soaked in blood.
"I didn't know what happened."
Ms Matsumoto, who is bedridden and reportedly unable to speak about the attack, had to receive emergency care, Kyodo News reported.
Investigators found no sign of forced entry into the house, but suspected the elderly woman's wounds had been caused by a cat, NTV network said.
Police found traces of what could be human blood on one of a number of stray cats found around Ms Matsumoto's home, according to Nishinippon Shimbun newspaper.
Tests are being carried out on a sample of the blood.
A spokesman told AFP news agency that investigators were not disputing the media reports.