Warning: distressing content
The RSPCA is appealing for information after the body of a dog believed to have been set on fire was found in a field in Darlington.
The charred remains of a young black and tan rough-haired terrier were found by a dog walker on Tuesday 21 November while walking a route near the River Skerne, between Darlington Rugby Club and Lakeside.
The small dog is thought to have been put in a bag and then set alight. It is unknown if the dog was dead or alive when set on fire. The RSPCA said the animal had not suffered previous injuries or fractures.
The person who made the find told the RSPCA they believe the dog had been there six days previously as they had noticed a bag but did not realise at the time what it was.
RSPCA inspector Krissy Raine said: “This is a really heartbreaking and sad incident and we are keen to find out who did this.
“This dog wasn’t an old dog - by all accounts she appears to have been quite young. We believe she was wearing a black and white jumper or dog coat when she was set on fire. Sadly she had no microchip or collar so we’re unable to trace the owner without the public’s help.
"We hope someone is aware of a similar-looking dog who has gone missing recently, and may have important information for us."
Anyone who has information is urged to contact the RSPCA on 0300 123 8018, quoting reference 01187471.
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