A Perth farmer has urged dog walkers to control their pets after two chickens were killed in a “cowardly” attack.
The birds, called Chobe and Cranberry, were mauled at Cotton Farm near Broxden Roundabout on Sunday.
Owner Mary Moore says a vet inspection confirmed the chickens had suffered injuries most likely inflicted by a large dog, rather than a fox.
Mary told The Courier the loss of her pet birds has left her both upset and angry.
‘Large increase’ in dog attacks at Perth farm since lockdown
She said: “I’ve lived here for 30 years and kept chickens for the past 10 of those, and never had animals savaged before.
“However, I’ve experienced a large increase, especially since lockdown.
“More and more owners are exercising their right to roam on the farmland and letting their dogs run wild and uncontrolled.
“There have been a number of instances recently of dogs frightening animals and the owners are either oblivious or just don’t care.
“It was heartbreaking to find two of my chickens dead in the yard.
“They were still warm when I found them.
“One of the most distressing aspects is that the owner almost certainly must have witnessed their dog attacking the birds, yet they just left without even having the decency to admit what had happened.
“That’s such a cowardly thing to have done.”
Although the type of dog involved has not been confirmed, the incident comes as the debate continues over whether to ban XL Bully dogs in the UK after a string of attacks.
‘Responsibility lies squarely with dog owners’
Mary says her animals should be allowed to live “unthreatened by owners that have no control over their dogs”.
She said: “Chobe and Cranberry are pets and part of the family, like anyone else’s pets, so the loss hits you very hard indeed.
“I didn’t report the incident to the police because they have more important matters to deal with.
“Responsibility lies squarely on the shoulders of the dog owners to be in control of their animals.”
Mary added: “Most importantly, dogs need to be kept on a lead, otherwise, what chance have they of controlling them?
“Owners must accept that their dogs can have a devastating effect on livestock.”
The incident comes after other incidents of farm animals being attacked in the area.
In April, at least 20 lambs were mauled to death in a suspected dog attack on a Fife farm.
A month later, a pregnant ewe was killed in the third such attack on another farm in Fife.