A fox was found ripped to shreds after a traditional Boxing Day hunt.
A woman who was out walking her dog on Thursday was horrified to discover the remains of the animal lying by the side of a road near Gatehouse.
She contacted police over fears that the fox could have been killed illegally during the hunt.
However a spokesman for Dumfries and Galloway Constabulary said the incident is not being treated as suspicious although it has been reported to council environmental health officers.
The dog walker described the sight of the dead fox as “horrific”.
She said: “I found it at an area known locally as The Cape, between the town’s war memorial and tennis courts.
“The carcass was in such a mess and it was an horrific sight.
“I walk the dog round there practically every day and I can say for absolute certain that there were no animal remains there the day before the hunt.
“What made it even more suspicious was the fact there were a lot of hoof marks in the grass round the carcass.
“I don’t have any detailed understanding of the hunting legislation, but I do know that actually killing the fox is against the law these days, so I phoned the police when I got back home.
“The remains weren’t there the next day. I don’t know if the police had removed them for evidence, if some scavenger had dragged them away, or if another disgusted walker had thrown them over the hedge so no one had to see them any more.”
Andrew Cook, master and huntsman of Dumfries and Stewartry Foxhounds group, insisted that they were not involved in the killing of the fox found by the walker.
He said: “There were eight guns out and we killed two foxes, which is allowed under the law. The foxes were shot.
“We did run into the woods briefly which was unfortunate.The dogs are allowed to flush the foxes from cover, which is legal under the law, and sometimes this does result in them touching the fox.”
Ian Beaumont, of national animal welfare charity the League Against Cruel Sports, said they had been “inundated” with calls from all over the country regarding hunting on Boxing Day.
He said: “We are currently processing the calls we’ve had and we are grateful to the person who reported this incident to The Galloway News and to the newspaper for bringing it to our attention.”