Police are begging dog walkers to keep pets on leads near livestock after the grisly discovery of 20 dead lambs in a Northamptonshire field on Tuesday (July 26).
Officers from the Northamptonshire Rural Crime Team believe the animals were victim of a “sustained attack” on land off the A361 in Badby, near Daventry.
Five of the lambs had injuries consistent with being bitten by a dog, according to a police spokesman.
WATCH: Fire takes hold of field in Northampton as temperatures increase
Firefighters in attendance at another field fire spread across 30 acres in Northamptonshire
Mother of Northampton university student criticises national estate agent and landlord over £300 deposit dispute
Northampton dad criticises Travelodge over 'mouse infestation' during hotel stay before family trip to Disneyland Paris
VIDEO: 'Flagship' mountain bike park in Northampton hailed as 'game-changing' - rough opening date revealed
Another 15 are thought to have died through shock or by being crushed in a stampede as the animals were chased.
The lambs’ carcasses were discovered by a local farmer at 10am on Tuesday although detectives believe the attack took place sometime after 4pm on Sunday.
PC Dom Preece reminded owners that they are responsible for controlling pets and that dogs chasing livestock can legally be shot by farmers.
He said: “All of this is completely avoidable if people walking dogs keep them on a lead and under control around farm animals.
“This simple measure is part of responsible dog ownership, helps to protect pets and livestock alike, and means everyone can enjoy our beautiful countryside both safely and responsibly.”
The field in Charwelton Road is close to the village and popular with dog walkers. Officers are appealing for any witnesses who may have been in the area on Sunday afternoon to get in touch by calling 101 using incident number 22000430931 or contacting CrimeStoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.