Three pet lambs being raised by children were killed in the latest attack by a dog at a Clydesdale farm.
The farmer found them dead, along with another injured, at 10am on Sunday morning.
“These were the kids’ pet lambs in the garden,” he said.
The police believe a large dog was responsible, and the farmer added: “I dread to think what would have happened if my kids had been in the garden at the time.”
The dog would have got the taste for blood, and he feared what could have happened to his children, aged from five to 11.
“My youngest daughter spends a lot of time in the garden with the lambs,” he said. “We can’t believe this has happened.”
The children had been looking after and feeding the lambs, part of a group of six all born in April and kept in the garden, and the youngsters saw the carnage on Sunday morning.
Now the farmer is calling for the police to have more powers to deal with dogs suspected of killing livestock, such as the ability to take DNA from an animal on the spot.
Police are asking anyone who saw a dog in the area of Gair Road, Carluke, between 9pm on Saturday evening and late the next morning to contact them and help identify the dog and its owner.
“Sheep-worrying is obviously upsetting and distressing and has a financial impact on farmers,” said a police spokesman.
It is the latest in a series of serious attacks in Clydesdale.
Two weeks ago, two Alaskan malamutes were destroyed after an attack on sheep in Thankerton, and people identified as owners have been charged following dog attacks on sheep in Biggar and in other incidents in Carluke.
In spring this year the police teamed up with the NFU and other countryside bodies to raise awareness of the devastation livestock worrying could cause, and to encourage dog owners to have more control over their pets near livestock.
Anyone with information about the weekend Carluke attack should phone Police Scotland on 101 and ask for the front bar at Lanark Police Office, where they can speak to Group Five Officers.