Warning: Graphic content - 'This is the gory reality of what dogs are capable of'

Sheep attack leaves 12 sheep dead and rest of flock suffering

The farmer found the dead sheep during his daily sheep inspection.
The farmer found the dead sheep during his daily sheep inspection.
Catherine Hurley

Catherine Hurley

Dog owners are being asked to keep their dogs on a leash at all times after a recent sheep attack left one farmer with a dozen dead sheep and the remaining in risk of aborting.

Vet Conor Donnelly of Orchard Veterinary Clinic Co Armagh, was called out to look at a flock of sheep yesterday, a day after being attacked by three dogs in the Keady area. 

During a daily inspection, the sheep farmer found nine sheep mauled and dead in the field and three dogs chasing his remaining sheep around the paddock, according to the local vet.

He said that when the farmer returned after calling for help, the dogs had scattered and fled the scene. From what the farmer could see at a distance, there was three large dogs that looked like German Shepherds. 

Initially, nine sheep were killed and a further three had to be euthanised because of wounds caused by the dogs, according to the vet. He said that the biggest worry for the farmer now is that the remaining ewes may drop dead or abort due to shock of the attack.

“This is the gory reality of what dogs can do if let roam free in a field or left off a leash nearby. I’ve never seen such a bad case sheep worrying in my 20 years working here”

Picture: Orchard Veterinary Clinic Co Armagh
Picture: Orchard Veterinary Clinic Co Armagh

Conor posted images of the aftermath of the dog attack online, which has since been shared hundreds of times. He said he posted the images to show the members of the public the grim reality of what dogs are capable of and the damage that they can inflict. 

He also asked dog owners to keep dogs on a leash when walking them in rural areas as it can have catastrophic repercussions for local farmers. He also asked farmers to be vigilant and to report any cases of dogs roaming to the authorities.

Get the latest news from the Farming Independent team 3 times a week.

“This is to warn members of the public to keep dogs on a leash at all times and be mindful of what they are capable of,” he explained.

He said the farmer did not find the dogs or the owners of the dogs after the attack happened. 

“These poor defenceless creatures stood no chance against them. Farmers please be vigilant to avoid more loss of life. 

“This is why dogs cannot be allowed to roam as this is an example of the real damage they can do.”

Online Editors


For Stories Like This and More
Download the Free Farming Independent App