The NFU is warning dog walkers to keep pets under close control when walking in the countryside.
John Archer, Environment and Land Use Adviser for the NFU in the south east said: “The vast majority of dog owners and walkers are considerate, but we’re very concerned at the rising number of attacks on livestock by dogs.
“We’ve received countless reports of sheep being killed or injured by dogs this spring - one shepherd has witnessed four dog attacks on his sheep in eight days.
“A handful of dog owners seem to think it is all right to allow dogs to run freely around farm animals.
“Even if dogs don’t physically attack livestock, chasing them can cause pregnant cows and sheep to abort or lead to panicked stock getting tangled up in fences.”
The NFU would like to remind people of the Countryside Code which asks countryside users to respect local communities and to ‘keep dogs under effective control’.