Sheep attacks are a worrying trend

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Scotland is a nation of dog lovers and one only needs to take a stroll along any of the many coastal or mountain routes on Arran to see the full extent of it. Day or night, rain or snow, there is always a retinue of walkers enjoying the pleasant surroundings of Arran with their dogs in tow.

While some are regular dog walkers and others are visitors enjoying the fresh air and exercise, they are all entitled to enjoy the scenic routes and vista’s and all that Arran is famous for. But if the disturbing trend of sheep worrying continues, Arran may gain a reputation for all the wrong reasons. Farmers are well within their rights to shoot a dog which is in the process of worrying livestock, or poses a risk to livestock, and if you have ever faced with the sight of such an attack, it is plain to see why. This is not something that a farmer would want, even less so the owners of dogs, and the reputation of Arran as a dog friendly island would be shattered if the unthinkable were to happen.

As most dog owners have now accepted the responsibility of what occurs at the one end of a dog when in public, hopefully the small minority can also start to accept responsibility for the other, sharper, end. The consequences for irresponsible dog owners and for Arran as a whole does not bear thinking about.