A pony was left with an 18-inch cut after it was deliberately slashed in Aberdeenshire.
The 12-year-old white Connemara/Highland-cross required urgent medical treatment and 28 stitches after the “cruel” attack in the Shivas area of Ythanbank near Ellon.
The incident occurred between 4.30pm on Friday, November 30, and 11am on Saturday, December 1.
Following initial enquiries and consultation with veterinary experts, it is understood that the pony was deliberately harmed with an implement.
PC Alan Mitchell said: “Enquiries are ongoing to establish what has happened to the horse but I would appeal directly to any neighbours or residents in the area who may have seen anything unusual or suspicious around the time this happened to contact us.
“The horse suffered an 18-inch cut across its left-hand side which required urgent medical attention and 28 stitches.
“I would urge anyone with information in relation to this cruel act to come forward and let us know. This incident has caused significant stress to the owners of the horse, which is now recovering.
“We have not received any reports of similar incidents in the area but I would urge horse owners to check their animals regularly and report anything unusual to police.”