A WOMAN has spoken of her “horror” after her pet dog became trapped in an illegal poacher’s snare while she was out walking on a rural footpath.
Police and the RSPCA are currently investigating the incident, which happened close to Harden Moor.
The animal needed emergency veterinary treatment to its leg.
An appeal has now been made for any witnesses to poaching activity in the area to come forward, after reports that fences were found to have had holes deliberately cut into them.
The incident happened as Linda White, of Hill End Lane, Harden, was out walking her two dogs, a red setter and a labradoodle.
“I was walking with the dogs out in front, when they disappeared into high bracken,” she said.
“I whistled and the red setter came back, but then I heard the most horrendous screams and yelps.”
Mrs White tracked the noise and found that her dog had been caught in the snare, near a fence about 9ft away from the public footpath.
“He was thrashing about trying to release the leg, but the ligature was too tight,” she said. “I had to leave him and run back to my car to get help. The distress was enormous.”
After rushing home, Mrs White called on her next door neighbour, a farmer, for help and they returned to try and free the dog with wire-cutters.
It was only when an emergency vet arrived that the animal was cut loose, after suffering for more than 40 minutes.
Despite initial fears that the dog may lose its leg, it has now returned home and is recovering with antibiotics and painkillers.
Mrs White added: “There are a lot of dog walkers who use the footpaths up there, and I don’t want any more animals to suffer.”
PC Richard Oddy, Bradford District Wildlife Crime Officer, is appealing for information about the incident, which happened at about 1pm on Thursday, July 17.
He said: “The local neighbourhood team was made aware of an incident in which a dog was injured after getting caught in a snare on land near Harden.
“I have visited the dog owner and examined the snare and confirmed that it is an illegal type of device.
"We are continuing to conduct enquiries into this matter and at this stage believe the trap may have been set by a poacher."