A WARNING has been issue to dog walkers to keep their pets on a lead after sheep were attacked on the Malvern Hills and Commons.
Over the last week, four sheep worrying incidents resulted in two sheep being bitten which were witnessed and reported to the Malvern Hills Trust.
One of the incidents was seen by a member of the Trust’s staff who intervened and stopped the dog chasing the sheep on Jubilee Hill. The seriousness of the issue was explained to the owners who put the dog on a lead. Sheep worrying, which includes chasing, is a criminal offence and dog owners could face a fine or in severe cases, see the destruction of their dog.
Beck Baker, the Malvern Hills Trust’s community and conservation officer, said “We’re shocked so many livestock worrying incidents have occurred over the last week.
“Each and every incident is distressing for the livestock and the graziers who care for the animals.”
“These incidents can be stopped completely by people putting their dogs on a lead at all times near livestock.
“We’d like to remind dog walkers that any dog, big or small, docile or aggressive, has the potential to chase or kill livestock so all dogs should be kept on a lead near grazing cattle and sheep.”
It is hoped the injured sheep will make a full recovery.
Witnesses to livestock worrying incidents are encouraged to call the Trust on 01694 892002 to ensure veterinary treatment can be administered swiftly and also to the police on the 101 non-emergency number as a record of the offence.
Beck added “Visitors to the Hills and Commons should also be aware that much of this landscape is registered Common Land which means that cattle and sheep can be found freely gazing outside the grazing compartments.
“Your pet should have excellent recall and if in doubt, please keep your dog on a lead at all times.”