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On Boxing Day, Rebekah McCormack discovered her pet goat Cleo was missing from the Jeffcoates Rd paddock the goat shared with several horses.
Concerned, she and friends searched for the missing pet and put up posts on Facebook, and she also contacted organisations such as the Dunedin City Council’s animal control team.
She thought someone might have stolen Cleo to keep as a pet, or that someone had taken the goat to worry her but would return Cleo after a few days, Ms McCormack said.
She never thought someone would harm the goat.
But yesterday a woman posted on Facebook she had found a dead animal behind the badminton courts in Victoria Rd, St Kilda.
Ms McCormack said she was horrified to discover not only was it Cleo, but her beloved pet’s head was missing.
"It’s not a nice way to find your animal, something that you love.
"She was one of my babies."
Cleo was like a member of the family and would jump in the car when a door was opened and sit on Ms McCormack’s knee.
"I’m pretty gutted."
She had reported the incident to police.
"There’s some sick people out there.
"If I’ve upset somebody or done something to make them angry then deal with me. Don’t take it out my animals."