Livestock worrying to be kept on a tight leash in Stratford district - The Stratford Observer

Livestock worrying to be kept on a tight leash in Stratford district

Stratford Editorial 7th Jun, 2024   0

EFFORTS are being made to keep a tight leash on livestock worrying in Stratford district.

Stratford District Council’s rural crime advisors are participating in ‘Operation Recall’ – a national initiative aimed at stopping dogs attacking farm animals, especially sheep.

The initiative is being promoted by Warwickshire Police who are working with other forces around the country and other partner agencies, such as the National Farmers’ Union, Country Land and Business Association, National Sheep Association and the RSPCA.

As the weather improves and newborn and young animals can be seen across the countryside, reports of livestock worrying increase, including deaths and injury due to attacks by dogs on all kinds of animals, especially sheep.

To help with this initiative, SDC’s team is raising awareness of the importance of responsible dog ownership across south Warwickshire.

This work involves visiting rural areas where dog attacks on livestock have already been reported, to discuss safe dog walking with members of the public and provide the National Sheep Association’s ‘Enjoy your dog walks’ information leaflet.

Under the Dogs (Protection of Livestock) Act 1953, it is a criminal offence for a dog to actively worry livestock and dog owners risk prosecution.

While the majority of dog owners do walk their dogs in a responsible manner, unfortunately there are a small minority whose recklessness puts the welfare of other animals at risk.

SDC’s law spokesperson Coun Natalie Gist said: “This is a significant initiative in a rural area like Stratford district, where livestock worrying is a perennial problem. It is important that the district council’s rural crime advisors continue to build on the work they have already done with local communities last year and carry on taking an active role in Operation Recall.”

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