A local MP is supporting a national campaign to encourage the public to control their dogs around livestock.
With lambing season well underway across Scotland, Peter Grant is supporting The Scottish Farmer magazine’s #TakeALead campaign.
The scheme encourages the public to keep dogs on leads when walking on or near agricultural land.
Since the New Year there have been three separate reports of sheep worrying in Mr Grant’s Glenrothes and Central Fife constituency and these incidents resulted in the death of nine sheep in fields in Cardenden, Leslie and Windygates
Mr Grant said: “Firstly, the term ‘sheep worrying’ is not strong enough. It doesn’t portray the severity of the impact dogs can have when let loose around livestock and will not serve as a deterrent to dog owners to take care around farm animals.
“I’m happy to help local farmers by raising awareness of these incidents and to encourage everyone to work together to ensure dog owners are responsible around livestock. These incidents are criminal offences and should be treated seriously with criminal action.”
David McKerrow, a Fife farmer, was left counting the cost after a dog attack on his flock in Windygates in late February.
He said: “I went down to check the beasts and found one of the ewes running with the rest of the flock, but with her head badly injured. She was in great distress and we took her straight to the vet where she was immediately put down. There was no sign of the dog that did it and nobody came forward.
“The stress the dog had caused to the flock led to one ewe aborting her lambs, three ewes with twin lamb disease and the first two ewes had one dead lamb each.”
To add your signature to the campaign, go to website: http://www.thescottishfarmer.co.uk/takealead/
Information about livestock worrying can be provided to Police Scotland via 101 or anonymously via Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.