SPIKE IN DOG ATTACKS PREDICTED AS PANDEMIC PUPPIES VISIT THE COUNTRYSIDE

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The Country Land and Business Association (CLA) is warning of the potential for a spike in dog attacks, as ‘pandemic puppies’ are set to visit the countryside for the first time, coinciding with the peak of the lambing season.

With dog attacks are up 10% compared to last year, the CLA – in line with the relaunched Countryside Code – is offering advice for dog walks in the countryside, to help the 2.2million new dog owners understand how to protect their pet while keeping farm animals safe.

This includes calls for owners to pick up dog faeces to avoid the spread of Neosporosis, an infectious disease of animals caused by the Neospora caninum parasite that causes abortion and stillbirth among dairy and beef cattle.

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The CLA, which represents thousands of farmers and rural businesses across the Isle of Wight, recommends dog walkers take the following action:

• Ensure your dog is under control; keep your dog on a lead and only let go if you are chased by livestock
• Never let your dog worry or chase wildlife or livestock. Follow advice on local signs to reduce disturbance to plants and animals
• Prevent your dog from approaching horse riders, cyclists, or other people and their dogs uninvited
• Keep your dog with you on paths or access land and don’t let it stray into crops including fields of grass, fruit and vegetables
• Never leave bags of dog poo lying around, even if you intend to pick them up later. Containers and deodorised bags can make them easier to carry
• Ensure your details are on your dog’s collar and it is microchipped, so you can be reunited quickly if it is lost

A lack of education around the Countryside Code has left some visitors without a basic understanding of what is acceptable behaviour. The CLA continues to campaign for the Code to be taught in schools across the region.

CLA South East Regional Director Michael Valenzia said:

“Getting a new puppy is an exciting time for everyone, although it is also a huge learning curve. Part of that learning curve is teaching your dog how to interact with other animals safely. But worryingly, a third of dogs bought during lockdown have never even visited a park, let alone a working farm.

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“The Countryside Code is generally adhered to by the majority of people, but there can be incidents of anti-social behaviour or a lack of awareness of the working countryside. All visitors should be conscious that the countryside is a place of work where the land, livestock, machinery, wildlife and environment must be respected.

“Over the past year, we’ve all come to value the importance of getting outside for our mental and physical wellbeing. Farmers and landowners are looking forward to welcoming the public to make the most of the 150,000 miles of public rights of way in Great Britain. We hope that by reading our advice visitors can respect the local environment while staying safe.”

The views/opinions expressed in these comments are solely those of the author and do not represent those of Island Echo. House rules on commenting must be followed at all times.
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Old Mike
Old Mike
1 month ago

Take note. Sheep do NOT want to “Say Hello” or have a friendly game!

Tony
Tony
1 month ago

Didn’t mention that farmers have the right to shoot dogs worrying livestock.

Miss sensible
Miss sensible
1 month ago

Wonder how many poor dogs will be dumped when people start going back to work ?
But totally agree dog’s should be kept on a lead when near livestock,.
It’s not the dog’s fault it’s their owners.
If you haven’t got the sense to look after a dog properly don’t get one !!!!
A dog is for life not just for lock down ….

ron ashton
ron ashton
1 month ago

I do not understand why dogs are not kept on leads. How many times do you get some moron with their dog running loose up to you saying it’s ok his/her is friendly.

Seafarer
Seafarer
Reply to  ron ashton
1 month ago

That’s happened to me a lot, I avoid places like Appley and Yaverland because of it. My dog loves children and adults but hates other dogs so she is on a lead whenever she’s out. She’s a Jack Russell so she doesn’t worry about how large another dog is, she’ll go for anything. Luckily we have a garden that she can tear about in but as a Terrier she’d be down a hole in an instant so I expect well have more instances of “lost” puppies or ones going over a cliff edge due to stupid owners.

Sunshine
Sunshine
1 month ago

Bloody hell. All the numpties with their dogs will be over here. No idea whatsoever. They will let their dogs off lead and we know what will happen next. The farmers should protect their animals and if they have to, fire 1 warning shot, if that does not scare the dog off, shoot it…..they are well within their rights to do it.

Mrs Susan Powell
Mrs Susan Powell
1 month ago

Dogs seem to be a fashion accessory at the moment. We were at Compton the other day walking on the beach when a young dog came along and jumped all over us. In the distance were three young men who the dog apparently belonged to. They passed us by, no ‘sorry about the dog’ or any acknowledgement of us at all. I like dogs but I’m not keen to have one leaping all over me!

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