Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council is asking pet owners to take steps to reduce the risk of dog worrying.
Along with attacking or killing cattle or sheep, if your dog chases livestock in such a way that could reasonably be expected to cause any form of suffering to the animals or a financial loss to their owner, it will be considered as dog worrying.
The financial cost can be substantial with the loss of valuable stock, veterinary care, abortions in attacked or frightened animals and damage to property. For these reasons, it is a very serious concern for farmers, especially during lambing season.
While most dogs are well looked after, friendly family pets, they all have the potential to inflict injury and to worry livestock.
Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council is urging dog owners to ensure their pet is under control at all times and is kept in a secure place at night.
Dog Wardens have the authority to seize any dog (of any type and breed) suspected of being involved in worrying or attacking livestock, owners may be prosecuted for any offences and a court may order the dog to be destroyed. A civil case may also be brought by the farmer for any financial loss suffered.
Dog Wardens will respond to all cases of worrying or attacks and anyone who witnesses an incident is encouraged to make a report by ringing 028 2766 0200.