DOG owners are warned to keep their animals under control during lambing season.
Sussex Police have issued the warning which urges dog owners to keep their pets ‘under close supervision’ when in close proximity to where sheep may graze amid fears that sheep are worried.
Sheep worry occurs when a dog pursues or attacks a sheep in a way that may cause injury, suffering, abortion, or loss of produce while in a field or paddock in which there are sheep.
“Sheep worrying is illegal and has serious effects including stress, injury, abortion and death. It also has a devastating impact on owners who watch their animals suffer the ordeal and financial cost,” a police spokesperson said.
“If you see sheep worrying, make the right call and dial 999.”
According to lawyers for Crombie Wilkinson, the maximum penalty for the owner of the dog is a fine of up to £1,000 in compensation and costs.
The police also have the power to detain a dog suspected of causing livestock concern if no owner is present, and can also obtain a warrant to enter the premises to identify a dog.
In November last year, nine sheep were killed and 140 others had abortions after a series of dog attacks in West Sussex.
Eight pregnant ewes were killed at Gumber Farm in Slindon on November 11 after a ‘prolonged period of worry’ which cost a farmer more than £1,500.
On the same day, a sheep was killed and two were injured in an attack on a farm in London Road, Washington.
Two husky dogs had escaped from a nearby garden, police said. They were eventually captured by the Shepherd and taken to Durrington Police Station in Worthing to be identified by their owner.
Earlier this month three sheep died and nine others were bitten after being attacked by a dog in a field at Clothalls Farm, West Grinstead.
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This notice was published: 2022-03-21 12:10:54