You are not permitted to download, save or email this image. Visit image gallery to purchase the image.
A $2000 reward is on offer following the discovery of eight puppies with their throats cut in an Invercargill park.
Otatara resident Kim Durry and her husband, Errol, had walked their dogs near Sandy Point three to four times a week for as long as she could remember.
On Friday afternoon, they spotted something they "couldn’t stomach".
"I thought it was a rat and then I realised ‘no, it’s not, it’s a puppy’.
"Then I saw the others lying there all with their throats cut."
Animal advocacy group Paw Justice had since offered a $2000 reward for information leading to the successful prosecution of those involved.
As the puppies had been dumped in a wide open clearing, Mrs Durry said she was terrified someone, especially a child, would come across them.
"I wouldn’t want my kids seeing that, we are teaching children to be kind and then they see people are capable of doing that.
"My husband works at the meatworks, he’s used to blood and guts but even he couldn’t stomach it."
The pair knew they had to do something, but had no materials to relocate the puppies, she said.
After covering them up with branches and pine needles, she sent a message to Southland volunteer-run rescue organisation Furever Homes.
In less than an hour, a volunteer came to retrieve the animals.
"I couldn’t comprehend how someone could do that."
There were plenty of people, including Furever Homes, who would have taken them in with "no judgement".
While Mrs Durry did not believe jail was the solution, she said people needed to be educated about the level of responsibility which came with caring for an animal.
"People need to be banned from owning animals if they can do that."
Furever Homes volunteer Rachel Hucklebridge said her team took photos of the puppies in case of future prosecution, before giving them a proper burial.
"This is happening too often, it shouldn’t happen at all.
"We want to see all animal cruelty cases put in front of the courts."
She could not understand what possessed someone to do such a thing.
"Being able to ask for help is really important, they could’ve got help from Furever Homes."
The organisation were now relying on the public to bring information forward.
A post on the Paw Justice social media page yesterday said violence against animals should not be tolerated.
"Established research shows that this type of cruelty against animals is linked to an increased risk of violent offending against human beings, including domestic violence, sexual assault and homicidal tendencies."
A police spokeswoman confirmed police had received a report of the incident.