Pet Owners Urged to Prevent Dogs Worrying Sheep

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A call has been made to dog owners across the UK, particularly in North Yorkshire, urging them to exercise greater responsibility and vigilance when walking their pets near areas with livestock.

As the lambing season progresses across the region, thousands of sheep are anticipated to give birth on moorlands, hillsides, and other rural landscapes. The Country Land and Business Association (CLA) has raised concerns, highlighting the serious repercussions of livestock worrying – a distressing phenomenon where dogs chase, attack, or stress sheep.

An acting director for CLA North stressed the critical importance of keeping dogs on leads or under tight control, especially in the vicinity of sheep during this sensitive period. They advised, “Owners should keep their dogs on a lead or under close control when walking through fields of livestock, particularly sheep at this time of year, and always stick to public rights of way.”

They further emphasised the legal obligations of dog owners, noting that failure to control pets could result in severe consequences, including fines. Livestock worrying is considered a criminal offence, and authorities urge the public to report any such incidents promptly.

“It is the owner’s responsibility to keep their dog under control, and we are also raising awareness about the potential consequences of not doing so,” they added.

The CLA is urging swift action, calling on individuals who witness or are aware of livestock worrying incidents to alert the authorities immediately. This proactive reporting, the association stresses, is crucial in gaining an accurate understanding of the problem’s scope and facilitating targeted interventions to address it effectively.

They commented, “It is important that every instance of livestock worrying is reported to the police. This will allow for a more accurate picture of the scale of the problem to be built up and assist the police and local authority in determining what resources and powers are required to effectively tackle the problem.”

The risks posed by uncontrolled dogs to livestock during the lambing season cannot be overstated. Every year, numerous animals suffer injury or death due to the predatory instincts of dogs. In addition to the immediate harm inflicted on individual animals, livestock worrying also has broader economic and emotional repercussions for farmers and rural communities.

In conclusion, as the lambing season progresses, dog owners are urged to exercise heightened caution and responsibility when venturing into areas with livestock. By adhering to leash regulations, staying on designated paths, and promptly reporting any concerning incidents, pet owners can play a crucial role in safeguarding the welfare of both animals and rural livelihoods.

Danielle Trigg
Danielle Trigg
Journalist Danielle is a skilled journalist specializing in regional coverage across the United Kingdom. With her wealth of experience and in-depth knowledge, Danielle dives into the stories that matter to local communities. Her meticulous research and engaging writing style captivate readers, providing them with a comprehensive understanding of the dynamic business landscape. Danielle's commitment to delivering accurate and thought-provoking news sets her apart, making her an invaluable asset to the News Write Ups team.

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