WARNING GRAPHIC CONTENT: Anger after sheep attacked by dogs at Astral Lake

There has been anger in Leighton Buzzard over two dog attacks on sheep grazing by Astral Lake.

Tuesday, 13th November 2018, 10:19 am
Updated Tuesday, 13th November 2018, 10:21 am

On October 31, a sheep was savagely attacked by a dog and reportedly was dragged in and out of the lake, with part of its ear ripped off.

It was the second reported incident of a dog attack on sheep since the lake opened in August.

Vanessa Newbegin's poster showing an earlier sheep attack

Now, dog owners are being warned to take responsibility by keeping their dogs on leads in areas where sheep are grazing nearby.

Sandhills residents Vanessa Newbegin has placed numerous posters showing the aftermath of one of the attacks.

Ms Newbegin said: “I’ve spoken to dog walkers about keeping their dogs on leads and often I’ve been met with a hail of abuse.”

Regarding the latest dog attack, she said: “The dog’s owner just stood there shaking as it tore into the sheep. It took two other members of the public to restrain the dog.”

Even well-behaved dogs can show an aggressive interest in livestock, and Bedfordshire Police has previously warned the public to ensure dogs are kept on leads near sheep.

Ian Foll, director of Astral Park Ltd, said: “It is extraordinary that people think their dog will never chase a sheep and yet is in the nature of most dogs to chase animals.

“There are signs at every entrance requesting that dogs are kept on leads at all times and warning that sheep are grazing.

“If members of the public who wish to exercise their dogs don’t want to put their dogs on a lead or can’t control their dogs then there is plenty of open space to walk nearby which isn’t grazed by sheep.

“It is completely inexcusable and very irresponsible of this person and anyone else who chooses to do likewise.”

Anyone with information about any dog attack is asked to contact Bedfordshire Police on 101.