NFU Scotland | /control-your-dog-on-farmland.aspx

SAVED: PAGE: ACTIVE AREA:
Title:
Type ID:
7
Type:
Slider
ID:
400069
Active:
True
Parent:
1
Pos:
0
Style:
Title:
Type ID:
1
Type:
Text
ID:
880
Active:
True
Parent:
3
Pos:
0
Style:
Title:
Type ID:
1
Type:
Text
ID:
881
Active:
True
Parent:
3
Pos:
0
Style:
Title:
Type ID:
10
Type: ID:
211
Active:
True
Parent:
4
Pos:
0
Style:
Title:
Type ID:
1
Type:
Text
ID:
884
Active:
True
Parent:
2
Pos:
0
Style:
margin-bottom:30px;
Title:
Type ID:
1
Type:
Text
ID:
885
Active:
True
Parent:
2
Pos:
1
Style:
Title:
Type ID:
8
Type:
Download List
ID:
88
Active:
True
Parent:
4
Pos:
2
Style:
margin-bottom:30px;
Title:
Type ID:
4
Type:
News Feed
ID:
0
Active:
True
Parent:
4
Pos:
4
Style:
Title:
Type ID:
1
Type:
Text
ID:
882
Active:
True
Parent:
3
Pos:
4
Style:
Title:
Type ID:
1
Type:
Text
ID:
883
Active:
True
Parent:
3
Pos:
5
Style:


Douglas Ross
Communications and Social Media Officer
T: 0131 472 4059
M: 07787 450370
E: douglas.ross@nfus.org.uk


In February 2019, NFU Scotland launched a new awareness-raising campaign to tackle the blight of irresponsible access by dog walkers in Scotland’s countryside.

The ‘Control Your Dog on Farmland’ campaign will run for 12 months and will focus on livestock worrying as well as on the increasing problem of dog fouling which can cause livestock to contract dangerous diseases.

The national campaign ties in with key partners and complement other work that the Union has played an integral role in, including the Scottish Partnership Against Rural Crime’s recently launched campaign.

Livestock worrying and dog fouling are two of the biggest issues that farmers, crofters and landowners face through irresponsible access by dog owners.

The key messages are aimed at farmers and dog owners and include:

  1. Be informed – know your responsibilities under the Code
  2. Plan ahead – know your route, ensure you have poo bags and a lead
  3. Control your pet - keep dogs on a lead around livestock. Know the steps to take if things don’t go to plan – cattle charging, dog escapes?
  4. Don’t leave it hanging - picking up your dog’s poo is not enough, take it with you and put it in a bin, even if on the fringes of farmland. Do not just ‘flick it’ into the bushes.

In December 2018, NFU Scotland surveyed farmers, crofters and landowners about the issues they have with irresponsible access, either through livestock worrying by dogs, or the impacts of owners failing to pick up after their pets on or near farmland. The survey had more than 340 responses, which showed that:

  • 72 per cent of respondents had an issue with livestock worrying on their land
  • 100 per cent of survey respondents said they have an issue with dog fouling on their land – this included plastic bag pollution as well as instances where livestock have contracted diseases from eating dog poo and plastic bags.
  • 84 per cent of responses felt the outdoor access code requiring ‘on a lead or under close control’ didn’t provide sufficient protection to them or their livestock.

Over the last 18 months NFU Scotland stepped up its action to tackle livestock worrying, tying in with partner agencies and giving its backing to a Members’ Bill by Emma Harper MSP to change the access legislation, seeking tougher penalties for those convicted of allowing their dog to chase or attack livestock.

According to Police Scotland a total of 338 incidents of livestock worrying were reported to them in 2018, with 131 incidents resulting in police conducting investigations. This included sheep, cattle, horses, and other less known species such as llamas and alpacas. However, this issue is still hugely underreported, something which the campaign will seek to tackle.

For livestock, it is not just the physical attacks by dogs that can cause damage; even allowing dogs to chase or ‘play’ with sheep or cattle, for example, can cause untold damage – from emotional issues to abortions to rendering the animal unable to be used for breeding in future. In addition, there are significant emotional issues for the farmers involved who work tirelessly to breed quality sheep to the highest welfare standards.

The campaign educates dog owners about responsible access when walking on or near farmland through national and regional events, and will include our ‘Ambassadog’, interaction at agricultural and dog shows across the country, as well as a partnership with veterinary practices across the country.  
This will be tied into publicity to encourage livestock producers and those facing issues with dog fouling to report irresponsible behaviour, how to do this correctly and avenues they can go down to seek further help from persistent offenders.

In addition to these two main issues, the campaign also seeks to educate walkers about the dangers of walking in fields with cattle and what to do if cattle charge at them or their pet.

For further information about this campaign or for campaign material call 0131 472 4000.
If you are using social media to help us spread the word please tag us @nfustweets or NFUScotland on Facebook and use the hashtag #ControlYourDog

Further Information and Useful links


  • Following extensive work to provide protection to farmers and crofters who have suffered attacks on livestock by dogs, NFU Scotland has backed the launch of a public consultation on this issue.
At the Scottish Parliament on Thursday 21 February, Emma Harper MSP launched a public consultation ahead of a proposed Members Bill to tackle incidents of dogs attacking livestock, the detail of which NFU Scotland has played an integral role in.

The proposed bill aims to give police, courts and potentially other agencies more powers to properly tackle offences of dogs attacking livestock.

Please take a couple of minutes to complete the survey by visiting: https://www.parliament.scot/gettinginvolved/111027.aspx

The consultation closes on 15 May.
Related News
Sheila Voas, Chief Veterinary Officer for Scotland's Blog - 31 July 2019

31-07-2019

Access to the countryside is fantastic both for improving human health and wellbeing and pet ownership has been shown to also...

Read More...
Union Backs Parliamentary Committee Report that Finds Dog Control Laws are Not Fit for Purpose

18-07-2019

NFU Scotland has welcomed a report from an influential parliamentary committee that scrutinised the Control of Dogs (Scotland) Act 2010 and...

Read More...
Partnership Tackling Livestock Worrying Launch New Banner Campaign

25-06-2019

A partnership involving NFU Scotland Police Scotland and Argyll and Bute Council continues to promote responsible dog ownership in the region...

Read More...
Irresponsible Dog Owners Targeted in Dumfries and Galloway

22-04-2019

NFU Scotland and partners were out in force in Dumfries and Galloway over the weekend to encourage responsible dog ownership in...

Read More...
Dumfries and Galloway Initiative Targets Irresponsible Local Dog Owners

08-04-2019

With collaboration across the agricultural industry increasing to tackle the blight of livestock worrying by dogs NFU Scotland’s Dumfries and Galloway...

Read More...

©NFU Scotland • All Rights Reserved • Web design by Big Red DigitalLog in

Close

Contact Us

 

 

 

No Robots:

This form collects and sends the information supplied to NFU Scotland. You can read our privacy policy for full details on how we protect and manage your data.
  I consent to having NFU Scotland collect the above details.