Supporting Farming

New Dog Control Group is a step in the right direction

THE establishment of a new national Dog Control Group has been welcomed by farm and IFA representatives as the lambing season gets into full swing.

Last week Minister for Rural and Community Development, Heather Humphreys appointed former Deputy Garda Commissioner, John Twomey, as the independent chairperson of the newly established Dog Control Stakeholder Group.

Made up of members from key Government Departments and interest groups, the body will make recommendations on strengthening the policy and legislation around dog control.

Minister Humphreys has also asked the Group to examine the issue of restricting certain breeds of dogs, in line with actions being taken by regions in the UK, including Northern Ireland.

“We have seen horrendous attacks by dogs on people, including children, in recent months and the issue of sheep worrying in our countryside continues to be a huge problem for our farmers,” said Minister Humphreys.

Last week, the IFA launched their 2024 ‘No Dogs Allowed’ campaign, with National President Francie Gorman accusing the Government and Local Authorities of continuing to ignore ‘the deepening issue of dog attacks on livestock’.

“Farmers have had enough and it’s time for decisive action to protect our livestock. We are demanding stronger regulations and stricter enforcement for those who disregard the safety and wellbeing of our livestock immediately,” said Francie Gorman.

Galway IFA chair Stephen Canavan said that while stronger regulations announced by Minister Humphreys in November was a step in the right direction it still didn’t go far enough to protect livestock from dog attacks.

Pictured: David Harney: Concerns over dog attacks as lambing season starts.     

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune:

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