DOG owners are being urged to keep their pets under control on the Malvern Hills over the holiday period.

The warning comes after a sheep was killed and another injured in separate attacks last month.

The Malvern Hills Trust has joined forces with West Mercia Police to ask dog owners to put their pets on leads near livestock while out on New Year's walks.

Beck Baker, community and conservation officer at the Trust, said: "Boxing Day and New Year’s Day are two of our busiest days in the calendar and we want everyone to have a safe and happy visit.

"We want to encourage people to take this issue seriously.

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"By putting your dog on a lead near livestock, sheep and cattle will be kept safe and happy. You’ll also save yourself and your dog worry and stress should anything happen.”

Dog attacks on the Hills and Commons should be reported to the Police by calling 101 and also to the Trust so they can arrange for the grazier to attend and administer veterinary treatment as fast as possible.

Since the first of January 2019, 6 sheep have been killed by dogs on the Malvern Hills and a further 13 have been injured. Despite chasing incidents also being a criminal offence, many of these go unreported.

John Chance, Hills grazier said "Dogs attacking and chasing the sheep, is very frightening and unsettling for the animals - I can tell when a dog has been loose in amongst the sheep because their behaviour changes and they become very flighty".