PIT BULL terriers are being thrown into wheelie bins with live cats to teach them how to kill in brutal dog fights, say horrified investigators.
The thugs involved in the illegal activity emerged during a probe in the north-east of Scotland.
Dogs, normally pit bulls, are specially trained to fight each other, often to the death.
Badly injured ones are often shot dead with a bullet to the head.
One Scottish SPCA investigator said: “The training method uses live cats where they are closed in wheelie bins.
“They put the bin on its side and let the dog go in and kill the cat.
That way the dog gets used to killing and used to being injured.
“It gets the bloodlust and it is encouraged to want to fight. They are trained to not have a stop button.”
The animal welfare charity also discovered three dogs who died gruesome deaths. One had been shot in the head, another bludgeoned and a puppy was left with bite marks all over its body.
The inspector added: “We have done a lot of work in the Aberdeen area and there is a particular problem in the north-east.”