Police have appealed for witnesses after a horse was sexually assaulted and stabbed in the chest in the Aberdeenshhire village of New Pitsligo.
23 year-old female Blaze later died in the Maud area as a result of the injuries sustained in the attack, believed to have happened between 9pm on Sunday 16 and 8pm on Monday 17.
Detective Inspector Norman Stevenson 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 in the days before this happened.”
“As a result of this cruel act a horse has died and a family have now lost a much-loved animal.”
Police Scotland have also reported that they have not received any reports of similar incidents in the area but have urged horse owners to check their animals regularly.
The horse’s owner Zoe Wright said in a Facebook post: “Anyone in the area (New Pitsligo) please check you horses, if they have any suspicious cuts or you see anyone acting oddly please contact the police.”
Ms Wright, 30,from Maud, has offered a £1000 reward to anyone who provides information that results in an arrest.