Farm Ireland

Thursday 22 March 2018

'One of the dogs came for me': Farmer sees 45 lambs destroyed in devastating dog attack

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Stock picture
Ciaran Moran

Ciaran Moran

Roscommon sheep farmer Gerry Ryan has told of a devastating dog attack on this flock that, in his own words, destroyed 45 sheep.

The incident which is under investigation by Gardai, took place in the Bealnamulla area of Roscommon on Thursday of last week.

Gerry told Shannonside FM that visiting one of his fields to feed 45 of his lambs he found two dogs 10 to 15 yards inside the gate eating a lamb.

"I climbed over the gate to see if I could catch the dogs or coax them out of the field. But one of the dogs came for me.

"I left the field and went home to see if I could get something to coax them.

"But when I went back they were gone," he said.

Gerry said when he walked down what he found was a scene of "pure devastation".

"There were lambs dead, lambs were eaten, lambs alive with bite marks on them and lambs in bushes.

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"It's a feeling and a sight not many would want to see."

Gerry said eight of the lambs were dead on the day, 12 were severely damaged, there was seven missing and a further 18 were unmarked but traumatised.

"We have found two of the sheep that were missing. The 12 that were badly damaged have been brought to the factory.

"Of the 18 that seemed unharmed two have since died.

"Today, we inspected them again, and we are going to put down two more.

"When dogs go into a field of sheep and attack them all the sheep are destroyed.

"There is no point in saying sheep are dead and sheep are marked.

"There are four lambs here at the moment that were completely unmarked. There's two of them dead now, and two will have to be put down."

Gerry said one of the main problems that lead to such devastation was that the field was small and the sheep did not have much space to get away.

Although he said some of the sheep burst through walls and fences in an attempt to escape.

"There is 14 out of 45 alive. There is still five missing."

Gerry questioned wheater people that have dogs are they socialising with them.

"Dogs are being tied up and the next thing they get out

"People have to take more responsibility for their dogs.

"The situation we are in here now. If we find the dogs. Who is to say the dog owner will admit to it.

"Unless I meet a dog owner with a conscience I have a serious legal battle ahead of me," Gerry said.

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