An animal charity is appealing for information after several deer were killed in suspected dog attacks in a North Lanarkshire nature reserve.
The Scottish Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA) said the attacks in Mosswater Nature Reserve in Cumbernauld could be a case of illegal deer coursing.
A member of the public told the Scottish SPCA they had found four mutilated deer over the past three to four weeks in the area.
It came after the society treated an injured deer in the same nature reserve who it said was found with “injuries consistent with a dog attack” on February 20.
Its wounds were so severe it had to be put down.
SPCA inspector Jack Marshall said: “We’re appealing to members of the public to come forward if they have any information about these incidents.
“It could be simply that there’s a local dog owner who’s not paying attention to what their dog is getting up to when it’s off lead.
“We would remind dog owners that it is an offence for your dog to be out of control in any public or private place.
“It’s also possible that this could be organised deer coursing, which is a crime.
“Either way, being attacked by a dog is a horrendous way for these deer to die. They will have spent their last moments extremely distressed and suffering massive amounts of pain and fear.
“We would urge local dog owners to ensure their dogs are kept on a lead around deer at all times and that they make sure they have sight of their dog if it is off lead.”