Two goats have been "slaughtered" and stolen from the side of a Ngongotaha road but the thieves are being warned if they eat the meat, it could be dangerous.
Owner Jane Wootton found a patch of blood where her 4-year-old goats had lived on the side of Oturoa Rd, near her farm just over a week ago.
"They were slaughtered. They cut their throats and then cut the collars. [The goats] were doing a good job down there and were just helpless."
She said she wanted others to know this kind of theft was happening, warning other farmers to stay aware and keep an eye open.
"People have to be really careful doing that because you can get sick from eating the meat."
Ms Wootton said the goats had recently been injected with an anti-worming formula which was harmful to humans.
"The meat has a withholding period of 35 days."
Rotorua Taupo Federated Farmers chairman Neil Heather said livestock theft usually increased during the Christmas period, when people were in search of extra meat.
"It goes on quite a bit. One of the problems is most farmers don't report it so, by the time police find out, the tracks have gone cold."
Mr Heather said using common sense like locking gates, reporting things straight away, keeping animals off the side of the road and out of sight where possible all helped to prevent theft.
Senior Sergeant Malcolm Collins said goat thefts were not common in Rotorua and, to his knowledge, no arrests had been made in regard to this latest incident.