Upset over ‘irresponsible’ dog owner after deer is killed in Ashton Court

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‘We need to respect the places we love to walk our dog’

Dog owners have been urged to show ‘some common sense’ after news of deer killed by a dog on the Ashton Court Estate landed on social media. A picture of the dead wild deer with visible bite marks over its body was posted on Facebook last week.

Approximately 200 deer form the herd on the estate. The reason Bristol City Council do not have exact number is because wardens attempt to keep the deer as wild and natural as possible, and don’t tag them.

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But posting on the Friends of Ashton Court Facebook page, user Dawn Pincott flagged up that a deer had been killed by a dog. Under the Countryside Code, it states dogs should be kept under control and in sight when in parks and countryside. It adds that to keep wildlife safe, owners must be confident their dog will return on command if let off.

Speaking to Bristol World, Ms Pincott added: “People often say that chasing animals is in the nature of the dog, in which case they should be kept on the lead in a place where wild animals are trying to survive. Of course we’ve also seen recently that dog’s behaviour can change and be unpredictable.”

The post led to a number of comments. One person said: “Why can’t these dog owners have some common sense, totally irresponsible the owner of the dog probably just walked away showing no compassion?”

Another said: “We need to respect the places we love to walk our dogs and equally respect the wildlife there too. Know some dog owners do. But I see dogs on a daily basis disappearing into the woodlands.”

Earlier this year, wardens cordoned off part of the park, near the Clifton Lodge car park, in a bid to protect endangered wildlife on the estate.

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