Police have concluded that a sheep that was initially believed to have been deliberately shot in Moray earlier this month was, in fact, attacked by a dog.
The original appeal by police on May 11 was met with horror and condemnation, with NFU Scotland describing the incident as “barbaric”.
However, police say an examination of the sheep, which was found dead in a field near Aberlour sometime between 8pm on May 9 and 5pm on May 10, has led to the different conclusion.
Wildlife Crime Officer, Police Constable Hannah Haywood, said: “We would still like to hear from anyone who may have seen anything suspicious between Sunday evening and early evening on Monday in the area of a field off the A95 at Carron, about one kilometre from the turn off for the Glenfarclas Distillery.”
Owners asked to take responsibility
Taking the opportunity to remind dog owners of their responsibilities, she added: “Under the Dogs (Protection of Livestock) Act 1953, if a dog worries sheep on agricultural land, the person in charge of the dog is guilty of an offence.
People walking their dog in an area with sheep are urged to keep their pet on a lead two metres long or less, avoid entering fields where lambs are present, and stay distant from sheep on open land.
Anyone with any information on the incident is asked to contact police via 101 or the Police Scotland website, quoting incident 0729 of May 11.
Alternatively, information can be given anonymously via Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.