Dog Owners

Police Instructions for Dog Owners

Attention all dog owners and walkers of the area, following a request from Whiteparish Council please find below a brief reminder of responsible dog walking.

When on any enclosed land with sheep all dogs must be on a lead or ‘under close control’. If you allow your dog to worry livestock you can be prosecuted and fined, ordered to pay compensation and even have the dog destroyed. Worrying livestock means attacking or chasing any farm animal or poultry – there does not have to be any contact. It also states that the farmer is not liable to compensate the dog ‘ s owner in such circumstances.
Any dog which is not a working dog can be regarded as worrying livestock merely by being off lead or not under close control in a field or enclosure where there are sheep. A landowner could shoot such a dog, if it can be proved that the action was necessary to protect livestock and that it was reported to the police within 48 hours. The dog’s owner can then be subject to all the above penalties too – except being shot, of course.
On a right of way your dog does not have to be on a lead but it does have to be ‘under close control’. This phrase is not defined but pretty much means that if you are in a field with animals or poultry and your dog will not always come, straight away, when called even when he’s chasing things, and then stay there, he could be at risk of being seen to worry animals. So if there is any chance he might go off then the lead is the best option until you are out of the field with livestock in it.

A person in charge of a dog must remove the faeces straight away if the dog has defecated in an area where the Dogs (Fouling of Land) Act 1996 applies. Otherwise they are contravening the Law and could be subject, on conviction, to a penalty of up to £1000. Responsible dog walkers will already be aware of this but as the weather gets better it is a timely reminder to us all. I don’t mean to scare you all but I would rather remind you of this than have to deal with the aftermath of any such incident.

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