Graphic images: Police warn dog owners to keep pets on leads after sheep attacks

Police have released graphic images of sheep that have been attacked by dogs to warn pet owners of the need to keep pets on leads while around livestock

By The Newsroom
Wednesday, 14th October 2020, 2:58 pm
Landowners are entitled to shoot dogs they believe are worrying livestock.
Landowners are entitled to shoot dogs they believe are worrying livestock.

The incident took place between 9am and 6pm on Monday, September 28, when a dog attacked sheep in a field in Barnwell Road, Thurning near Oundle – killing one and injuring several more.

Officers from the Force’s Rural Crime Team are reminding owners that they have a responsibility to keep their pets under control, and dogs chasing livestock can legally be shot dead by farmers.

Northamptonshire Police’s Wildlife and Rural Crime Officer, PC Abbey Anstead, said: “Whether you’re a farmer or pet owner, the death of an animal is devastating, but all of this is completely avoidable if people walking dogs keep them on a lead and under control around farm animals.

Northamptonshire police have released the images after the dog attack

“This simple measure is part of responsible dog ownership, helps to protect pets and livestock alike, and means everyone can enjoy our beautiful countryside both safely and responsibly.”

Anyone with information or who may have witnessed this incident is asked to call Northamptonshire Police on 101 quoting reference number 20000511628. Or alternatively, call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.

Tips for safe and responsible dog walking around livestock:

• Keep dogs on a lead and under control when walking through fields of livestock

• Always stick to public rights of way and leave all gates as you found them

• If you live beside land where livestock is grazed ensure you know where your dog is at all times, and keep your property secure so your dog cannot escape

• Cows can be curious and may follow walkers. If this happens, keep facing the animal and move calmly and slowly, don’t turn your back to it or run

• Steer well clear of young animals and do not try to pet them. Cows and calves will be protective and may become aggressive

• If you feel threatened by cattle when with a dog, let go of the lead so you and the dog can get to safety separately

• Dog owners MUST bag and bin their dog’s poo - it carries a parasite called Neospora which causes abortions in animals and the bags left on the ground can be ingested and cause slow painful deaths, or bailed into silage and eaten that way

Incidents of livestock worrying should be reported online to the police or by calling the non-emergency 101 number. If the dog is in the process of worrying livestock and cannot be stopped, please call 999.

Anyone who shoots a dog to prevent livestock worrying must notify the police within 48 hours.