A twisted thug left a bulldog covered in blood and on the brink of death after a machete attack that left the animal with a giant wound on the side of its head.

RSPCA were alerted to the horrific attack by a man who had discovered the dog on the way to make arrangements for his father’s cremation.

He spotted the American bulldog in the middle of Priory Road, near Stanley Park, Liverpool and pulled over.

The man assumed the dog had been hit by a car but could see blood pouring out from a large gash in the side of her head and took her to PDSA in Kirkdale for emergency treatment.

Staff at the veterinary clinic were able to clean and stitch the wound to stabilise the dog

Staff at the veterinary clinic were able to clean and stitch the wound to stabilise the dog and then called the RSPCA.

The dog, now named Ruby, is now in the care of RSPCA officers and is receiving more medical treatment as she recovers from the ordeal.

Rachel Henderson, the officer investigating the incident, said she believes the incident occurred not long before Ruby was found.

Nine-year-old Ruby is believed to have been attacked with a machete and suffered so much blood loss "she could have died", Ms Henderson said.

Nine-year-old Ruby is believed to have been attacked with a machete on Priory Road, near Stanley Park, Liverpool

Ms Henderson said: "We believe Ruby was attacked with a machete which is what caused this horrific wound and I am keen to find the person responsible for this vile incident.

"We have no idea why she was subjected to this horror – but we have traced her owner who said she ran off from her nearby home at about 12.30am on the Thursday when she was found.

“I believe, looking at the blood loss, the attack was carried out not long before she was found and am appealing for anyone who may have seen anything on this busy street or have any information to contact me."

She said it was "like someone wanted to cut her ear off" and praised the man who brought Ruby into her care, as he likely saved her life.

"It must have been hard for him at the time as he was on his way to make arrangements for his father's cremation," she added.

Ruby will continue to be cared for by the RSPCA until she is ready to go home and anyone with information about the incident should call the RSPCA appeals line on 0300 123 8018.