Dog owners urged to act responsibly after deadly attack left five sheep dead and ten more injured

Bradford Telegraph and Argus: Some of the animals left dead by the dog attack on a flock of sheep in a field on an Otley Chevin farm Some of the animals left dead by the dog attack on a flock of sheep in a field on an Otley Chevin farm

Five lambs were killed and another ten injured after a savage dog attack on Otley Chevin.

David Lawson, who runs Russell Farm, said the frightened animals were left in various states of gruesome injury in corners of a field.

The incident, the second of its kind in as many weeks, happened on land bordering Danefield Wood on Sunday.

Mr Lawson, who runs the farm with his wife Sue and son Chris, said he realised at about 11.30am.

“There was one lamb dead already and about 15 that had been bitten and were in various degrees of injury. They were all just lying in corners, absolutely frightened to death – you could pick them up and they wouldn’t move.

“We went out with a pick-up to collect them and got a vet out who had to put another four out of their misery. We’ve now got ten that were injured and have been stitched up and kept in the shed to heal and on antibiotics.

“We had to find their mothers and put them together because they’re still taking milk.

“We’ve had similar problems in previous years and were a little bit anxious at Easter, but thought we’d got past that – then unfortunately someone has had neither the sense nor ability to control their dog and it’s done this.”

A similar incident happened on fields belonging to a smallholding lower down the Chevin on April 13 when a Japanese Akita killed one lamb and injured others.

On that occasion, though, the owner apologised and reached an agreement with the flock’s owner – this time, they are thought to have run away.

Mrs Lawson, who took the shocking photograph shown here of the aftermath, said: “The owner was witnessed running off once they had caught their dog.

“However scary the prospect of admitting to the attack, they should have come forward.

“How upset do they think we are after seeing our stock in such a sorry state? We have put so much time and energy into rearing them.”

Mr Lawson is asking dog owners to act more responsibly.

“We’re getting posters made to put up on gateways to try and make people think. I don’t know if they’ll make much difference, but we have to try,” he said.

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