A Cavan farmer is urging dog-owners to be more vigilant after a gruesome, fatal attack on lambs which is “one of the worst” their vet has ever come across.
On Monday afternoon (December 2) at around 3.30pm the lambs were in the Crowe family’s field in Kilnavara when two dogs attacked five lambs aged five or six months old, and one adult sheep.
Vincent Crowe said it was “the worst” example of livestock attacks by dogs he has ever seen.
“I’m just urging dog-owners to be more vigilant, more careful with their dogs - you can’t blame the dogs.
“This is the result of owners letting out dogs on their own, and not taking care of them, I just want people to see what happened and maybe it can be avoided in the future.
“The dogs probably got through the bars on the gate - if it had been a hedge around the field the lambs might have gotten away but they were trapped and didn’t stand a chance,” he said.
The lambs were kept as part of a herd of 28 - two were discovered dead from their wounds while a further four had to be put down by local vet, Rachel Burgess.
Rachel, who had to put down the wounded animals, said: “It was one of the worst cases I have ever seen, their skins were ripped off - it was just crazy, a disgusting thing to have happened.”
“Actually it is the second case in two weeks I’ve been called out to and a colleague of mine had another so we just want the word to get out for people to be responsible pet owners - the vast majority, of course, are but when something like this happens some people might think that their own dog is not capable of it, which is not the case, it’s a hunting instinct, the dogs might be neglected and get carried away in a pack,” she said.
Vincent has taken away the remainder of the traumatised sheep to more secure lands and says he cannot return any of them to the Kilnavara field.
The sheep who were killed were not in lamb, however Vincent says the effects of the attack remain with the herd.
“They’re not up to much now, I don’t know what can be done with them, I certainly can’t put them back in Kilnavara, now that there are dogs around with a taste for blood, this happened to us before and the rest of them just pined and pined and just faded away, it was very sad.
“But I just want to get the word out that this is the result of irresponsible dog-owners neglecting their animals, so we wanted to highlight it and I hope to God it doesn’t happen to anyone else, it’s an unpleasant experience,” he said.
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