NFU Scotland has welcomed Emma Harper MSP’s announcement to bring forward a consultation on a Members’ Bill to tackle livestock worrying following on from months of pressure from the Union.
With a clear increase in the number of devastating dog attacks on sheep throughout Scotland, NFU Scotland has been pushing the message that dogs need to be controlled around livestock and that authorities need to have clear powers when dealing with such incidents.
The Union has been working directly with the Scottish Farmer on the recent ‘Take A Lead’ campaign which has garnered a lot of attention, both from politicians and the general public.
Following on from the announcement, NFU Scotland President Andrew McCornick said: “Livestock worrying is an issue which is effecting farmers the length and breadth of Scotland and it is undeniable that there has been a serious increase in the number of incidents reported. We know that a huge number of instances go unreported, so the real scale of the issue is likely to be even greater than what is in the public domain.
“I am delighted that Emma Harper is taking a Members’ Bill to the Scottish Parliament and I look forward to working with her, to push through this badly needed legislative change. NUFS is leading the charge on this issue, as we recognise the cost to industry caused by uncontrolled dogs. The Union has spent a great deal of time on this problem, trying to educate both the public and its members, but it is clear that the time has now come for affirmative action.
“We want people to enjoy the countryside, but we do not want to sacrifice the livelihood of farmers and crofters just because a minority of dog walkers refuse to put their dogs on a lead.” Ends