Sheep worry sparks Peak District dog walker alert

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DOG owners are being reminded to make sure they keep their pets on a lead when out walking through farmland.

Officers from the Tideswell and Area Safer Neighbourhood Policing Team (SNT) are encouraging people to adopt a responsible approach, especially during the lambing season.

The reminder comes after concerns from local farmers and residents across the area.

PC Kevin Lowe of the Tideswell and Area SNT said: “A Beeley farmer has reported losing two sheep during the last eight weeks after they had shown signs of being victims of sheep worrying.

“There has been an increase in the number of dog walkers visiting the area during the nicer weather, and unfortunately there are a few people who do not appear to have respect for lambing time and allow their dogs off the lead in fields occupied by sheep.”

Owners can be fined if their pets are found to be worrying or chasing livestock.

Farmers are also allowed by law to shoot dogs caught worrying their livestock if all other attempts to get them away fail.

PC Lowe added: “Sheep are the livelihood of some farmers and even if they are not physically attacked, they can suffer from considerable stress which may lead to their death.

“We don’t want to discourage people from walking their dogs but I would appeal to people to make sure their dogs are under control and on a lead when they are in a field or following a footpath occupied by sheep.”

If you would like to contact the Tideswell and Area team call 0345 123 33 33 or email bakewell.neighbourhoods@derbyshire.pnn.police.uk.