The Farmers’ Union of Wales is urging members to report all incidents of livestock attacks to the police to ensure that the right actions can be taken.
FUW Deputy President Ian Rickman said: “Avoidable losses, such as those that occur when a dog chases or attacks livestock, remain a significant source of frustration for the livestock sector in Wales.
“Industry initiatives, such as the FUW campaign “Your dog, Your responsibility” which widened the message to respecting the countryside, picking up after your dog, keeping dogs on a lead near livestock and making sure dogs don’t escape from home, have had some impact but sadly we keep hearing about more incidents recently.”
Mr Rickman added that the FUW recognises that there is no one ‘quick fix’ to this issue, and that a mixture of education, campaigning and legislative changes are needed.
“As part of our work in this area, we will continue to lobby for real changes to be made to current legislation in order to provide a better deterrent to irresponsible dog ownership and to ensure that the penalties fit the seriousness of the crime. However, to get a true picture of the situation and to help us get those legislative changes, we need farmers to report such incidents to the police.”
Pembrokeshire PCSO Jude Parr from the Rural Crime Team said: “I fear that farmers are not informing us as many just seem to deal with it themselves or go directly through to their Insurers. We fear that numbers will increase because of lockdown and more people buying dogs.”