Laois IFA Sheep Committee Joe Whyte this week welcomed the launch of a new IFA Protocol to help farmers who encounter a dog attack on their sheep flock.
The IFA protocol involves an easy-to- follow, 10-point Plan of Action covering what a farmer should do following a dog attack or sheep kill.
Joe Whyte said, “Based on the feedback IFA gets from farmers who have had to deal with a dog attack on their flock, one of the biggest problems is the lack of information on what they should do, who they should contact and where can they get help.”
The IFA Protocol is designed to help farmers who have to deal with the horrendous trauma of a dog attack on their flock. It deals with these basic questions and also outlines important aspects of the law and how the dog warden service and the Garda can help.
“It also sets out how to keep a full record of the attack, which can be used as evidence at a later stage.
Joe Whyte said IFA is continuing to work closely with the Department of the Environment on responsible dog ownership and held a very successful round of meetings with all of the country’s dog wardens late last year.
He said an effective dog warden service is essential as dog wardens are very experienced and can be helpful in apprehending stray or marauding dogs.
Meanwhile, IFA National Sheep Chairman John Lynskey said there is a strong view among sheep farmers that the sector was short-changed in the CAP and Rural Development implementation plans recently outlined by Minister Coveney. He said the move to incorporate the Sheep Grassland payment into the SFP of flock owners erodes any additional value and benefit from the scheme and removes the positive incentive the grassland scheme provided to maintaining the national ewe flock.
John Lynskey said IFA has sought a meeting with Minister Coveney on the sheep grassland issue.