Over 3,000 sheep killed or injured each year by dogs – Gardaí

Members of An Garda Síochána based in the midlands have issued a clear warning to dog owners of the consequences of dog attacks and sheep worrying.

Leading with the startling statistic that more than 3,000 sheep are killed or injured each year by dogs, Gardaí based in Laois and Offaly urged dog owners to keep their pets well in check.

In a series of facts developed by the Garda National Community Policing Unit, the Gardaí highlighted some home truths.

“Chasing by dogs can do serious damage to sheep, even if the dog doesn’t catch them. The stress of worrying by dogs can cause sheep to die and ewes to miscarry their lambs,” the factsheet warned.

If you live in or near a farming area, you must make sure that your dog cannot escape your property as it may find its way onto land containing sheep.

Continuing, Gardaí said: “When in or near fields with livestock, keep your dog on a lead and under control at all times.”

The Garda leaflet concluded urging the public to report sightings of out-of-control dogs to the local Garda station.

The warning is especially timely following an overnight dog attack in Co. Kilkenny over the weekend, where one animal was savaged and killed, and another was injured.