The remains of the deer found hanging
The Scottish SPCA is appealing for information after the animal's carcass was found in Ayr.
The roe deer had been suspended nine feet in the air, with its broken hind leg positioned around a tree branch.
Its ears and a large section of its face were missing.
A member of the public found the animal, whose body had started to decompose, in a field in Millview, Mainholm, on the outskirts of the town on Saturday.
Scottish SPCA chief superintendent Mike Flynn said: "This discovery is very suspicious and deeply concerning."
He added: "While the cause of death is unclear, we have no doubt that this animal was suspended from the tree out of malice.
"The first few inches of the deer's face are missing, as are its ears, which may be because other animals have been feeding off it.
"However, we also have to look at the distinct possibility this deer was injured and killed as a result of the barbaric practice of coursing.
"The motive for this sickening blood sport appears to be little more than the pursuit of some sort of thrill or pleasure from hunting an animal down and watching it being mauled to death by a dog."
He added that it was likely the animal was already dead when it was suspended from the tree, saying it would have been "extremely difficult" to do this while the deer was alive.
Mr Flynn said: "The average weight of a roe deer is around 10-25kg, so it would have been possible for an adult acting alone to have lifted the deer up to hang it from the tree.
"It has started to decompose but we don't think it has been there any longer than two weeks."
Anyone found guilty of hunting with dogs can face up to six months in prison, a £5,000 fine or both.
Mr Flynn appealed for anyone with information to contact the Scottish SPCA's animal helpline on 03000 999 999.
He said: "We are very keen to hear from anyone who has witnessed deer coursing or suspects anyone of being involved.
"Information such as a vehicle registration is extremely useful and can help us track down the perpetrators of this cruel and mindless activity."
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