ANOTHER farmer has urged people to keep their dogs under control near sheep, after a further case of sheep worrying on Isle of Wight farmland.

Andrew Hodgson, of Cheverton Farm, Shorwell, keeps some of his flock at Niton Manor Farm on St Catherine's Down, Niton, and got an alert by a neighbouring farmer that the sheep were been chased by a dog.

It took Mr Hodgson 15 minutes to get to them, by which time the dog and its walker had gone, but the 275 sheep were unusually all huddled together in a tight group, breathing heavily and displaying very stressed behaviour. Two had been nipped on the neck and were bleeding.

This followed the incident reported by the County Press last week, when more than 25 sheep died at a field near Merstone following a suspected dog attack.

Mr Hodgson said: "I was lucky not to find any dead sheep but they had most definitely been chased.

"The field has a walking trail running through it and is just below the Pepperpot so it is a popular footpath and well-trodden.

"I am not trying to stop people walking on my land. I do not mind people walking through and it seems a shame to have dogs on a lead on downland so I'm not demanding that dogs are kept on a lead.

"I just think the two things can happen at the same time, sheep in a field and people walking with dogs, as long as the dogs are kept under control. People should know their dogs and their behaviour.

"I have signs up either end of the field, asking that dogs are kept under control. My phone number is on the signs so if people's dogs do chase the sheep, I would rather, for the sheep's sake not mine, to be told about it."