Animal worrying: Lamb destroyed and ewe left seriously injured following Scotland's latest livestock worrying incident
Police Scotland is warning dog owners to act responsibly after a lamb had to be put down following an incident of animal worrying in the Glenesk area of Angus last week.
The incident involved a dog worrying a flock of sleep on Wednesday, June 16, and left a ewe badly injured, while a lamb had to be destroyed.
The incident was reported to the police and is currently being investigated.
This is the latest in a series of incidents which have been prompting police to remind dog owners that it is their responsibility to control their animals while near livestock.
In March this year a puppy was shot dead by a farmer in Fife after it entered a field and worried a flock of sheep in the Ballingry area.
The owner shared the incident on social media warning other dog owners to be extra careful and to keep their pets on a lead.
Livestock worrying is an offence – one which you can be prosecuted for – and Police Scotland is trying to spread the word that even if your dog is usually obedient around other animals, you should always keep it on the lead while around livestock.
The force added that it is worth remembering that even if you can’t see livestock, if you are walking in farm fields you should expect that they may be nearby.
Worrying livestock is when an animal, such as a pet dog, attacks or chases farm animals in a way which may result in injury or suffering.
In the case of females, this suffering can include abortion, and loss of or diminution in their produce.
In addition to the potential harm facing the farm animals – and potentially the dog involved – there is often collateral damage to fences and field boundaries adding to the financial repercussions landing on the farmer.
Legally, they are allowed to protect their livestock and if they see an incident of animal worrying taking place - while no farmer wishes to take such extreme action - the dog is at risk of being shot.
Police Scotland added: “Please don’t end up with a dead dog and a criminal charge as well."
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