A DOG with severe facial injuries was seized in Banbridge last night (Wednesday) following a raid as part of a police operation into badger baiting.
The animal, who was found during a search which was part of Operation Meles, is to be treated for its injuries by a vet today.
A 58 year old man, arrested in connection with a case of animal cruelty in Banbridge, has been released on bail pending further enquiries.
Another 33-year-old man has appeared in court charged with cruelty offences as a result of PSNI investigations.
A number of searches have been carried out in the Lawrencetown area, leading to the seizure of four more terriers. The authorities have carried out five searches in total in the Banbridge, Gilford, Lawrencetown and Rostrevor areas in recent weeks.
David Wilson of the USPCA said he was “delighted” with the result of the search but said that there were no winners in badger baiting.
He explained that badger baiting, where the animals are attacked by dogs after being dragged from their sets, is prominent in Northern Ireland.
“The dog’s injuries are very, very grotesque, and obviously received as a result of badger baiting.
“There are no winners in badger baiting. The dogs suffer every bit as much as the badgers. It ends up with possibly both, certainly one, dying.
“The dogs suffered greatly as a result,” Mr Wilson added.
“They never receive veterinary treatment for the injuries they get. Some of these injuries can be horrific. Their jaws can be broken and dragged off, their teeth pulled out.”