A farming family have condemned dog owners who let their pet savage a two-week-old lamb and leave it for dead in a ditch.
The defenceless creature was found soaked in blood and lying motionless at its farm in Perthshire.
Although the lamb survived the mauling, he suffered severe cuts to his head and throat. He may also lose vision in one eye.
Claire McDiarmid, who works at West Leys Farm, near Errol, with husband Donald, said: “We were really, really lucky we didn’t lose him completely.
“Somebody spotted that our gate was open and saw the lamb lying in the ditch, covered in mud and blood,” she said. “It looked like he was dead.
“We managed to get to him and rush him to the vets.”
She added: “The dog had taken him by the throat and left him punctured and swollen. He was in a very bad way, but he is managing to pull through. We will have to keep a close eye on him though.
“It was fortunate that this dog only got hold of one of our lambs.”
Mrs McDiarmid dubbed those responsible cowards.
She said: “What is really disappointing is that someone knew their pet did this and they left our lamb to die in the ditch.
“It would have been better if they just called us anonymously – at least then we could have gone out to him as soon as it had happened.”
She has pleaded with dog owners to keep their pets on a lead while near livestock, particularly during lambing season.
“It is so important that people stick to the countryside code,” she said.
“We’ve not had problems with dogs in the past, but there have been times when our lambs have been killed by foxes.
“You can tell by the size of the bite marks that this wasn’t a fox though, it was a fairly big dog.
“And this didn’t happen overnight, this was on Saturday afternoon.”
The attack came just days after a farmer in Henley-on-Thames, England, reported 40 of her lambs had been killed by dogs.
Shocking images of the dead lambs went viral on social media.
Last month, Dunblane farmer Duncan McNicol urged dog owners to keep pets on their leads after four of his ewes were attacked in the space of a week.