Over Farm boss in court after dog bit ewe
OVER Farm Market pioneer Robert Keene was in court this week after one of his dogs attacked sheep on nearby land.
The 51-year-old, of Over Farm, Over, Highnam, admitted being the owner of a dog not kept under proper control and which worried sheep.
He appeared before city magistrates on Tuesday.
His son's 23-year-old girlfriend Kate Ezra, also of Over Farm, also admitted similar charges.
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Prosecuting solicitor Graham Dono said: "It was 5pm on October 20 last year when Mr Keene's Labrador, called Cazes, and Miss Ezra's lurcher/collie cross, called Licorice, were seen in a field at the Vineyard.
The dogs were chasing several sheep.
"They isolated one of the sheep – a ewe – and were being aggressive towards it, nipping at the neck and rear end.
"Teeth marks were later found on the ewe."
Keene told the court: "It is a shame that this has had to come to court as the owner of the sheep and I have been good friends for years.
"It is sad that this could not have been sorted out differently.
"The dogs are not dangerous, but I admit they were up there and we are keeping them under stricter control now."
Magistrates fined each defendant £100.
They also ordered both of them to keep their dogs under control.
They were also both ordered to pay prosecution costs of £30.
Mr Keene started his Over Farm business 29 years ago, selling potatoes and onions from a stall by the A40 Gloucester-to-Chepstow road.
His business has grown hugely since then and he now sells more than 80 different types of fruit and vegetable from his farm.
Gloucestershire Constabulary issued a warning to dog owners earlier this month, urging them to keep their animals under control.
It followed reports of canines attacking sheep across the country.
Rural and environmental crime officer for the Gloucestershire force, Jon Palfrey, reminded dog walkers that landowners have the legal right to shoot any dog worrying their livestock.