YOBS who left a dead rabbit on prominent display near a busy Wearside road have been slammed for their “sickening” actions.
The gutted carcass of the animal was discovered by walkers using the subway under the A183 Chester Road, close to Prestbury Road in Pennywell, yesterday afternoon.
Today, city leaders and animal rights campaigners slammed the twisted minds who placed the remains on the top of the pole, with RSPCA officials calling it “distressing and upsetting”.
It is thought several people would have been involved in placing the rabbit over the post, which stands at more than 6ft.
One 32-year-old woman who passed the spot, which sees hundreds of cars pass every hour and is close to schools and homes, said: “It’s awful.
“As I approached, I couldn’t tell what it was, but I couldn’t believe it when I realised it was the body of a rabbit.
“Whoever even thought to do this must be sick.
“There’s no way of telling how it died, but whatever happened to it, it’s undignified way for an animal to end its days and a horrible thing for other people to see.
“I hope they see this and think again about what they’ve done, and about the job they’ve left someone else to clear up.”
The discovery has since been reported to Sunderland City Council, which is making efforts to remove the grisly sight.
Councillor Michael Mordey, portfolio holder for city services, said: “The council does remove dead animals from the highways, public spaces or private gardens.
“In this instance staff could have been employed more productively instead of cleaning up this sickening display.
“Hopefully if evidence of the perpetrators exists, the police and the RSPCA will prosecute those responsible.”
A spokeswoman for the RSPCA said: “This is a distressing incident and must’ve been very upsetting for all who saw it.
“It is not clear how this rabbit died but we would urge anyone who is concerned about an animal’s welfare to contact the RSPCA Cruelty and Advice Line.”
Anyone with information which could help the charity can contact it on 0300 123 4999.