A dog owner has said it's a "miracle" her pet is still alive after it was shot 40 times in the head with a shotgun.
Three-year-old white Swiss shepherd Naiko suffered the horrific wounds when it wandered off near its house in the south-western French department of Gironde on Sunday.
When the pooch came back from its stroll, though, its owner Sarah Galeazi found the poor thing covered in wounds and immediately took it to the vet.
Some of the pellets were embedded so deep in the dog's head that they could not be removed safely.
A large shotgun shell can normally hold up to 18 pellets, meaning the perpetrator likely reloaded before continuing to fire.
Ms Galeazi told French news site Demotivateur: "The dog received 25 shots of buckshot in the head at close range. It took a pellet in the eye. There is very little chance he will come out of it.
"The dog is so nice, there is no reason to shoot it. It's inexcusable!"
The owner initially counted 25 pellets but the vet, based in the commune of La Reole in Gironde, said the dog had more than 40 in its head.
Naiko was placed under observation with Ms Galeazi fearing the worst but remarkably the dog survived.
It has lost the use of its left eye after two pellets were fired there.
The vet said: '"We couldn't remove all the pellets, some of them are too deep."
Owner Sarah Galeazi said: "It is a miracle that Naiko is still alive."
She has filed a complaint this week at the gendarmerie in La Reole and has alerted animal rights organisations L214 and the Fondation Brigitte Bardot.
An investigation has been opened.
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