A four-year-old Kelpie sheep dog named Tubby stands on the backs of Dorset Cross sheep after having herded them through an obstacle course at Sydney's Royal Easter Show. Reuters/Tim Wimborne

A kelpie puppy was shot and skinned, and thrown in the grasslands of the northern coast of New South Wales. The dead animal was discovered along the Queensland Road in Casino by local rangers on Friday.

The pup was skinned and shot, as confirmed by veterinarians. It was between the age of six and 12 months. The Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals referred to the crime as "a grotesque and incomprehensible act of cruelty.” The pup was skinned from its scalp all the way to the top of its back.

The dog was dumped in grasslands along Queensland Road in the early morning hours of Friday. It had been killed 48 hours before being discovered by local rangers, as reported by The Daily Telegraph. The dog was medium sized, around 50 centimetres tall and between 15 and 20 kgs in weight. Although the dog was not wearing a collar chain, it was well fed; and therefore it is believed to be someone’s pet. The pup was sandy coloured and had some white colour on its belly and black fur under its jaw.

The Australian Kelpie has a lifespan of 10-13 years. The breed is also known as Kelpie, Barb and Australian Sheep Dog. According to the New Zealand Kennel Club, “ The Australian Kelpie, also referred to simply as the Kelpie, or the Barb if it is all black, was developed in Australia in 1800's to herd livestock.”

The act may prompt an arrest. According to Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Amendment (Penalties) Bill 2003, cruelty to animals carries a penalty of $22,000 and two years of imprisonment. The public has appealed for more information about the attack.

The news comes as the search for a German Shepherd who was last seen with its mouth taped shut running across an Ipswich highway enters its second day. The dog, in terrible condition, was discovered by truck drivers along the Cunningham Highway, who subsequently notified the RSCPA.