A WARNING has gone out to dog owners calling on them to ensure their pets are under control after an attack on the Malvern Hills led to a lamb being put down.
The incident happened last Monday near the West of England car park.
The lamb, which had left the grazing compartment, was given immediate treatment by a vet but its injuries were so severe it failed to recover and had to be euthanised.
Community and conservation officer Beck Baker said: “We’d like to remind people that although cattle and sheep on the hills can be found within the electric-fenced enclosures listed in Stockwatch, you should expect to find livestock anywhere, at any time on the Malvern Hills and Commons.
“The enclosures are not 100 per cent stock proof and the Hills and Commons are registered common land, which means cattle and sheep can be found freely in the landscape, outside of our grazing projects.”
She added anyone who had any doubts about how their dog would react to livestock or could not guarantee they would return when called should keep them on a lead at all times.
Livestock worrying, including chasing, is a crime and the details of this incident have been passed on to the police who are dealing with the report.
Beck added “These incidents are also very distressing for the grazier who has to deal with the traumatic injuries, the cost of veterinary care and loss of part of their livelihood.”
A second incident happened last week, where two dogs were allowed to chase sheep on the Hills, is also being followed up by the Trust.
No animals were injured but chasing does stress the sheep and can result in secondary injuries for example broken legs or abortion of lambs if sheep are pregnant.
The Trust provides Stockwatch each week with information about the location of the grazing enclosures to help dog owners be prepared.
Dog walkers can choose to avoid these areas if they wish to lower their chances of encountering livestock but all visitors should be ready to encounter livestock anywhere at any time on the Malvern Hills and Commons.