Appeal after sheep has ear and face ‘ripped to shreds’ by dog

Warning: this story contains graphic images which some may find upsetting.

A SHEEP has had its face and ear ‘ripped to shreds’ after the second attack by a dog on Northam Burrows in weeks.

It is reported that the tan-coloured lurcher or greyhound-type dog chased down the sheep near the Burrows Centre on Sandymere on July 30 at around 4pm.

Distressed holiday makers witnessed the attack and took the injured animal to the Northam Burrows rangers who called the graziers and made the sheep safe.

Mark Wallington, Seasonal Lead Ranger said: “We think the dog’s owners know their dog was involved in an incident as they were heard talking about it and a silver people carrier type car was known to leave the area very quickly.

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“Unfortunately we were unable to find either the dog or its owners or get a full description of the vehicle to take this further.

“The dog would have had a significant amount of blood around its muzzle, judging from the damage done to the sheep.

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“Luckily, there was no major damage to the arteries, and the farmer thinks it will make a full recovery.”

Torridge District Council is keen to track down the owners, and urge anyone with any information on this or any other incident to come forward to the Burrows centre by calling 01237 479708 or emailing

Mr Wallington added: “This incident only stresses the importance of dog owners keeping their animals under close control when around livestock, and preferably on a lead.

“After all, no matter how well a dog is trained there is always a chance it may do something unexpected.

“Orders made against owners of dogs that worry sheep are liable to a fine and an order made for the dog to be destroyed.”

The council is currently running a consultation on the proposed Dog Control Orders, for more information visit the link in the top right or visit the Burrows Centre for a full copy and to make comments.

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