VETS are asking dog owners to keep their dogs on leads when walking near sheep as the annual lambing season gets underway.
Vets say they have seen a rise in the numbers of attacks, the results of which may often lead to lambs being lost and sheep being killed and injured, and that ewes are particularly vulnerable at this time of year.
British Veterinary Association president Robin Hargreaves said: “Even dogs who are usually calm and good natured can become very excitable and difficult to control when faced with livestock.
“Tragically this can lead to chasing, attacks and fatalities for sheep and other animals.
“I think most owners are well meaning but if your dog is off the lead you may not even be aware of the chasing or attack. It’s important to know where your dog is at all times.”