80 sheep killed by dogs in Hastings

It appears more than one dog was involved in the attack.
It appears more than one dog was involved in the attack. Photo credit: Getty

Around 80 sheep have been killed and another 25 left injured after a dog attack in Hastings. 

The sheep were found near Fernhill on Friday morning by a member of Hasting District Council's animal control team on their way to work.

"They saw sheep in the paddock looking bunched up, with some exhibiting blood. They called it in and Animal Control attended immediately," said John Payne, the council's regulatory solutions manager.

Payne said no dogs were seen in the area so it is thought the attack happened late last night or early Friday morning.

"The sheep are exhibiting two distinctive attack patterns indicating more than one dog."

He said early morning patrols had been arranged over the long weekend.

In light of the incident, Payne stressed it was important for farmers to remember the threat wild dogs posed to stock.

"We must never forget that a dog is a descendant of the wolf. They are simply a wild canine predator domesticated," he said.

"Even if they have been socialised or trained you cannot eliminate the desire to chase and kill stock.  You can take the dog out of the wild but you can’t take the wild out of the dog. 

"The only way to eliminate stock worrying is to keep your dog under proper control.  Just because your dog is sitting on the porch in the morning doesn’t mean it has been there all night. In fact, the odds are it hasn’t."