Pedigree sheep killed in frenzied dog attack

October 31, 2016

A local farmer’s wife has spoken of the trauma her family suffered after a frenzied dog attack left a dozen of their pedigree sheep stock dead and her husband fleeing for his life as the dogs turned on him.

Speaking to The Examiner after last Sunday morning’s horrific incident on the family farm in Ballsmill, Amanda McShane said she and her family are traumatised by the disturbing attack which saw three dogs slaughter 12 sheep and injure several more before attacking her husband.

Mrs McShane says her husband had a lucky escape from the ferocious pack after they made a run for him during his attempts to scare them off and the distraught mum-of-four added that the aftermath could have been even worse had either of her two sons been in the field.

Aside from the distress the incident has caused, the family must also contend with the financial loss, which, Mrs McShane says, has had “a huge effect” on their livelihood.

“It’s been so upsetting for us. These sheep are pedigree, Easy Care stock and were very valuable so it has had a huge effect on our livelihood.  It’s been very hard to see my husband so upset over his stock and we are just in shock at the whole incident.  We are constantly checking the sheep and I’m afraid to let my child out in case [the dogs] come back again.

“The field is somewhere we go over every day for a family walk with my five year old son, so to think we could have been turned upon by these dogs is horrific.  My eldest son helps out on the farm too so it just doesn’t bear thinking about what could have happened.  This has really traumatised us all. My husband said the dogs were vicious and he had to make a run for it when they turned on him.”

Mrs McShane described the dogs – a golden labrador, a white labrador and an alsatian – as “well kept, well groomed” and she has appealed for their owners to come forward and take responsibility.

“We really don’t know where the dogs came from but somebody knows and they should say something because there are children in the area and these dogs have had the taste of blood now so I would be so fearful of something terrible happening.

“This happened in broad daylight and the dogs would have been covered in blood when they left.  Someone must know who these dogs belong to and the dog owner themselves must know what happened. It just beggars belief that a dog owner would just let their dogs roam like this with such terrible consequences.

“People need to be responsible for where their dogs are and I would appeal for anyone with information to come forward before someone is killed,” she added.

Local Councillor Terry Hearty has called on the dogs’ owners to do “the decent thing” and come forward adding that the ferocity of the attack highlighted the issue of “responsible pet ownership and public safety”.

“It is no exaggeration to say that a young child out playing or somebody on their own out walking could have been very easily killed had these animals come across them.  These are dangerous dogs and they must be kept closed in or tied up when not being supervised.  It is selfish, irresponsible and dangerous to do otherwise,” he said.

“I would urge the people who own these animals to come forward before they are found out.  Similarly, if anyone has any information as to who owns these dogs I would ask them to come forward as well.”