DOG owners are being warned to keep their pets on leads when out walking on farm land after six lambs were savaged in Burnley.
Police were called to a farm on the border between Burnley and Bacup around 5-30pm on Saturday, May 4th, after reports of a dog attacking sheep on the moor near the farm. On their arrival they found six small lambs which had been attacked and savaged and two sheep, one of which was still alive, but severely injured. This sheep had to be put down a short time later. A further two sheep had run off from the dog into a deep bog.
PCSO Dave Johnson said: “The farmer was visibly upset as not only had these animals been savaged but one lamb had it’s head bitten clean off. He had had no choice but to shoot the dog to stop it causing more damage. We’ve since spoken to the dog owner about what happened.
“Incidents such as this are rare and we’ve carried out regular patrols, leaflet drops and put signs up in many rural areas warning dog walkers of their responsibilities.
“Dog owners should be aware that in extreme circumstances such as this, farmers have the right to shoot any animal worrying their livestock. The farmer in this case was inconsolable by what happened.
“When walking on farm land, or in the countryside, dogs must be kept under control and when walking near livestock they must be on a lead.
“Instinct can take over when a dog is not on its lead – especially if it is with another dog – and this can lead to attacks on sheep, which not only cause suffering to the animals but also to the farmer, whose livelihood can be affected.”