A WOMAN is warning dog owners to be on their guard after discovering a stick with screws in it.

Claire Willacy took to social media to raise awareness about the tree branch she spotted on a footpath near Whalley Primary School.

She said: “I was shocked, to be honest.

“You hear about things like this happening but to see it for real was awful.

“How anyone could do this and potentially harm an animal is just beyond me.

“It’s lucky that it was daylight as that lane is not lit and I wouldn’t have spotted these in the dark.

“I’ve removed the nails from the sticks.

“I couldn’t see any more but I went back to see if there were any more.”

Claire added that she could not bear to think about the effects on other pets if they got hurt.

She said: “I always look where I’m walking in case any other dog owners haven’t picked up.

“It’s not really the cost to dog owners that springs to mind first.

“I’ve had Wilbur for 12 months now and he’s part of the family.

“The thought that he or any other dogs may get injured and that they may suffer is the most upsetting thing.

“Also you have to think about a dog owner picking it up and throwing it without knowing about it and then hurting themselves.

“I don’t know anyone who would do this.

“I need to report it to the police in case there have been others.”

Cllr Ged Murfin, who represents the Whalley area, said: “I am absolutely horrified that anybody could be so spiteful towards animals and I don’t understand the mindset of some people who are hell-bent on causing dog and dog walkers harm.

“There is something un-English about it as we are nation of animal lovers, and people are doing this.

“If anyone has seen this happening then I would urge them to contact the police and report it.

“There has been a lot of anti-social behaviour around Whalley involving youths and there is something peculiar about it.

“It makes you wonder where it will all end.”