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Anyone who saw the photographs of seriously injured sheep following the Inveraray dog attack earlier this year would agree that they will live long in the memory.
The injuries were horrific. And this type of attack has become all too common in Scotland.
We all think our slobbering pooch would never be capable of attacking anything but, given the right circumstances, any dog, no matter how placid, will revert to instinct and could chase a farm animal. When in a state of excitement and aggression, a dog may then choose to attack a human being, and we are into another ball game entirely.
The solution seems simple – keep control of your dog at all times and have it on a lead around livestock. As Brian Walker himself said, it is a very small minority of people who disregard these basic precautions, but that minority is growing in number.
People love to moan about the dark days, wet weather and lack of entertainment. Bearing this in mind we should thank the various groups who organised this year’s Christmas light displays. They fair cheer up these dreich December days.