Muckhart Village from Seamab

Livestock worrying

We have been alerted by local farmers that livestock worrying is becoming a concern within the Muckhart area.

The guidance below has been prepared by the Scottish Partnership Against Rural Crime, in partnership with Police Scotland, Scottish Natural Heritage, NFUS, Scottish Land and Estates and the Kennel Club, to raise awareness amongst dog owners.

Inspector Jane Donaldson, Police Scotland’s Rural Crime Co-ordinator, said: “The worrying of livestock can have devastating consequences for farm animals and has an obvious financial and emotional impact on farmers and their businesses. The vast majority of livestock worrying incidents involve sheep and can occur when a dog attacks, chases or in the case of sheep, is at large (not on a lead or otherwise under close control) in a field where livestock is kept. The devastating effects of a dog attack are evident and cannot be overstated but significant damage can also be caused by a dog simply being present in a field.”

The advice to dog owners who live in rural areas or anyone walking and exercising their dogs in the countryside is to ensure they are under control at all times and avoid going into fields where livestock is grazing. The Scottish Outdoor Access Code says dogs shouldn’t be taken into fields where there are lambs or other young farm animals.

Farmers and those who use the countryside are urged to report all incidents of livestock worrying to police on 101 or 999 in an emergency.  For more information on outdoor access rights and responsibilities, see www.outdooraccess-scotland.com

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