Probe launched after exotic lizards dumped outside centre

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A probe has been launched after a pair of bearded dragons were “irresponsibly” abandoned outside an Aberdeen animal centre.

The two reptiles were left outside Mrs Murray’s Cats and Dogs Home, near the city’s beach, for 12 hours before concerned animal-lovers brought them indoors and alerted the authorities.

The Scottish SPCA yesterday released CCTV images of the man who left them there in an effort to track him down.

The footage shows a man wearing a white shirt ditching the exotic lizards at about 7pm on June 17.

Another image depicts the man inside a dark car.

The reptiles were not discovered until the following morning at about 7am, by the staff at Mrs Murray’s.

Scottish SPCA inspector, Fiona McKenzie, said: “We were notified of this incident when the bearded dragons were discovered on the morning of June 18.

“Having reviewed CCTV in the area, we are keen to speak to the man in the images as we believe he may be able to help us with our inquiry.

Keith Marley, who runs the New Arc animal sanctuary in Ellon, expressed his dismay at the incident.

He said: “I think it is abysmal.  There are plenty of places that would and could take the animals – so why do people have to dump them.

“It doesn’t take a lot of effort to find a new home for an animal like that.

“I think it is completely unnecessary and unacceptable. It is a sad reflection of society.

“Charities are left to  pick up the pieces after incidents like this, we have to pay for people’s irresponsible behaviour.”

In May, a rabbit was found in a plastic bag by a dog walker in Mintlaw, and handed over to the Scottish SPCA.

Abandoning an animal is a criminal offence in Scotland and if the person responsible is caught they will face court.

Anyone with information has been urged to contact the Scottish SPCA via its confidential animal helpline on 03000 999 999.