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Flock of Pedigree Lambs Attacked in Angus

One lamb has died while seven more were left injured following a dog attack last Sunday (28 October)

A farmer has suffered a significant loss to his flock of pedigree Beltex ewe lambs following a devastating dog attack which has left seven injured and one dead.

The attack left seven of the lambs requiring antibiotics, three needing stitches and one has been given a poor prognosis from the vet. One of the lamb’s injuries were so bad that it had to be put down.

The lambs were the result of embryo transfer and were the last in that genetic line which means this is a significant loss for the farmer, Neil Caul of Balkello, Auchterhouse, who discovered the aftermath of the attack in the morning of Sunday 28 October.

This attack is one more in a long line of sheep worrying incidents which have occurred across the country due to irresponsible owners not keeping control of their dogs.

NFU Scotland has recently called for local authorities to increase the number of Dog Control Notices (DCNs) issued for livestock worrying incidences, which a recent Freedom of Information request from NFUS to all local authorities in Scotland highlighted was at a very low number.

The Union has also called on the Scottish Government to implement a Dog Control Notice database for all dogs and dog owners which are issued DCNs. It is hoped that this would not only aid in monitoring dogs which are issued DCNs but would also further discourage owners from letting them off their leads around livestock.

Following on from the attack, Mr Caul said: “The attack on these lambs was horrific and distressing to all concerned and those irresponsible dog owners should be held accountable.

 “The owners should at least have had the decency to come forward and let me know of the incident. Their dogs would have been covered in blood, they know they did it and other people know they did it. It was a very cowardly act and far stiffer penalties need to be introduced to those responsible.”

NFU Scotland Legal and Technical Policy Manager Gemma Cooper said: “Despite an increase in public awareness over the last five years, figures show that incidences are still far too frequent, and something has to be done. This is not just a couple of sheep to Mr Caul, it is his business, his livelihood.

“NFU Scotland is backing Emma Harper MSP’s proposal of a Members Bill to tackle the high number of livestock attacks which occur throughout the Scottish countryside and is also urging Local Authorities to make more use of Dog Control Notices”

Notes to Editors

  • A Freedom of Information request was submitted to 32 local councils – 21 had issued zero DCNs for livestock worrying over the six months between 1 December and 31 May, seven issued one DCN, two issued two, Perth and Kinross issued three, and Argyll & Bute issued 12.
  • In May, NFU Scotland wrote to the Scottish Government with five key asks designed to tackle the ongoing blight of livestock worrying. For more information visit: https://www.nfus.org.uk/news/news/nfus-gets-tough-on-livestock-worrying.
  • South Scotland SNP MSP Emma Harper has recently announced that she will bring forward a proposal for a Members Bill.  Alongside its lobbying activity, NFU Scotland supported The Scottish Farmer’s ‘Take a Lead’ campaign on livestock worrying with a petition signed by 4,000 people calling for legislative changes in this area handed over in June.


Ends

Contact Douglas Ross on 0131 472 4059

Author: Douglas Ross

Date Published:

News Article No.: 152/18


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