Ernie Clark. Hilperton Division, Wiltshire Council.

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Tuesday January 16, 2024 Keep your dogs on a lead around livestock.

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Otherwise, they may be (legally) shot!

On average Wiltshire Police receives two reports each month of dogs chasing, injuring or killing sheep and other livestock.

A survey by the NFU Mutual with 1100 dog owners showed that 66% allow their pets to roam freely off-lead in the countryside, yet 39% admit their dogs do not come back to them when called, and 64% admit their pets chase livestock.

Wiltshire Police would like to remind people who may be out and about enjoying the wonderful Wiltshire countryside with dogs, it is a sensible precaution to keep them on a lead when livestock are nearby.

It is a criminal offence and can mean the dog owner could face prosecution and a fine of up to £1000, in the most serious case. 

Find out more about livestock worrying and how to report it on the Wiltshire Police website:

If you see a dog worrying or attacking livestock please call 999 or report online at or call 101 after an occurrence.