WQ91526 (e) Tabled on 26/02/2024

What assessment has the Minister made of figures from NFU Mutual which show that, if present at the time of their dog attacking cattle, only 22 per cent of owners would report it to a local farmer and just 11 per cent would call the police?

Answered by Minister for Rural Affairs and North Wales, and Trefnydd | Answered on 05/03/2024

No assessment has been carried out.

I take this issue very seriously. There is an increase in the number of incidents reported and I encourage farmers to continue to report all incidents to the police. It’s important this information is recorded. Messages are shared regularly on responsible ownership through social media in support of campaigns alerting owners to their responsibilities.  Dog owners should familiarise themselves with Natural Resources Wales’ Countryside Code which provides clear guidance on the responsibility of dog owners to keep their dogs under effective control.

Following the Responsible Dog Ownership Summit, and subsequent workshop held recently, a series of events will take place this year to develop and deliver a strategy for the promotion of Responsible Dog Ownership in Wales. My officials will continue to work closely with Third Sector organisations, Police forces and Local Authority representatives to promote responsible dog ownership and reduce attacks on livestock.

Officials are working with the UK Government on introducing further safeguards through the Dogs (Protection of Livestock) (Amendments) Bill to deliver a number of amendments to the Dogs (Protection of Livestock) Act 1953 to improve enforcement in response to incidents of livestock attacks by dogs.