THE Dorset farmer campaigning to change the law following the death of his now famous Highland cow Gladis is one step closer to ensuring the safety of livestock across the country.
After his pregnant Highland cow Gladis died due to a dog attack in May this year, Cameron Farquharson began campaigning to make it a legal requirement for dogs to be on leads around livestock.
With the backing of West Dorset MP Chris Loder and Farming Minister Victoria Prentis, the Gladis’ Law Campaign has been successful in driving livestock worrying to the forefront of upcoming legislation and saw extra protections for livestock included within the Animal Welfare (Kept Animals) Bill.
The Bill passed its first reading in the House of Commons this summer but many more stages remain in both the House of Commons and the House of Lords until Royal Assent is given and the Bill becomes law.
Under the proposed changes, dog walkers will now face criminal prosecution if their dog chases any livestock to the point of causing harm or abortion and will also be prosecuted if their dogs are off their lead or out of control in a field of sheep, poultry, or enclosed game birds.
“We’re over the moon with the result,” said Mr Farquharson, “but we’re not counting our chickens until the dotted line is signed! We’ve been overwhelmed with donations from people all over the country, we’ve now had over £40,000 donated which is just incredible!
“We want to create a charity in Gladis’s name where these funds will go to help and support farming families who are struggling. We also want to open our gates and allow people to spend time with our fold at Eggardon Hill and stay at Redlands Coppice.
“The support from others really helped my family get through these difficult months, and it’s important for us that we can do the same for others when they need that support.”
The team behind the Gladis campaign has been working tirelessly since May petitioning the Government and getting as many people behind the campaign as possible.
Mr Farquharson continued: “We would like to thank the media for covering the campaign, and we’d also like to thank the farming community and every single person that has supported us in changing the law to keep our livestock safe. Together we’ve done it!”
n To support the campaign visit www.gladis-law.com and add your signature to the petition.