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Dog walkers reporting wild boar attacks in the Forest of Dean

By The Citizen  |  Posted: October 16, 2013

Wild Boar

Comments (10)

REGULAR dog walkers are scared to take their animals out after a rise in the number of attacks by wild boar.

Forestry Commission rangers said they were aware of at least four incidents where dogs had been left seriously injured in recent weeks after meetings with boar.

It’s believed the problem stems from too many people feeding the wild animals, which makes them associate humans with food and leads to too many close encounters. Warnings have been sounded from all quarters for the practice to stop.

Dog owner Helen Szuluk, from Bream, said: “I’ve had it myself where we’ve met boar out on walks and it’s very scary.

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“One of my neighbours was walking his dog only a couple of weeks ago and a boar chased the dog off, turned round and then chased him – he wound up scrambling up a tree.

“There’s been a lot of incidents lately and an awful lot of people are scared to take their dogs out now because they’re scared what might happen.”

The Forestry Commission’s wildlife manager Ian Harvey said he’s had more complaints of dog attacks this year than ever before.

His team is one third of the way through the biggest boar cull it’s ever carried out – 135 animals.

He said: “There’s a few different types of complaints.

“You get people annoyed and upset that their garden or land near them has been damaged and that’s about the same level as it usually is.

“You also get calls about people who have been chased and I think we have had a few more of them this year.

“We’ve certainly had quite a few dogs being injured – three or four quite seriously in recent months and that’s a lot more than we would usually see.”

Forest-based UK Wild Boar Trust runs its own Don’t Feed the Boar campaign and offers advice to dog owners when confronted by the animals. A spokesman said: “As soon as you spot a wild boar just turn around, recall your dog, put on the lead and walk the other way. If you happen upon a wild boar at close quarters without knowing they were there and they, in the very rare case, start to become aggressive towards your dog, drop the lead instantly as this will give your dog the chance to run away.

“Do not pick your dog up or try and shield it from the boar.”

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  • catharguy  |  October 23 2013, 9:08PM

    For those of that live on the Welsh side of the Forest of Dean. There will an opportunity to air any concerns regarding the wild boar at a Parish Council meeting next Tues the 29th of October at Redbrook Village Hall. The meeting will be part of the Parish Council's itinerary for the evening and it will start at 7.00 pm. There should be a representative from the Forestry Commission in attendance.

  • RoadWombat  |  October 16 2013, 4:36PM

    BOAR STEW 1 lb boned and cubed wild boar meat 1/2 lb bacon 1 onion chopped 1 tsp. crushed garlic 2 tsp. curry powder 1/2 cup water 2 Tbs. parsley flakes 1 can stewed tomatoes (16 oz) 1/4 cup sliced carrots 2 medium potatoes 2 Tbs. cornstarch In a skillet fry bacon until crisp. Remove bacon, cool, crumble and set aside. Pour off all but about 3 Tbs. of bacon grease. Cook boar meat cubes, onion, garlic, and curry powder in remaining grease until meat is browned. Stir during cooking. Stir in 1/4 cup of water. Remove from heat and set aside. In a 2 qt casserole combine parsley, stewed tomatoes, carrots and potatoes. Add meat mixture to casserole and mix well. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes. Mix 2 Tbs. cornstarch with 1/4 cup water and stir into casserole. Bake for 30 more minutes or until meat and vegetables are tender.

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  • spindles12  |  October 16 2013, 3:57PM

    I wonder how many of the people with dogs that have been chased by boars had the dog off the lead at the time? Maybe the boars are fed up with being chased by dogs and are getting the first punch in, so to speak. Are there any people who were chased by boars when they DIDN'T have dogs with them?

    |   4
  • transcendant  |  October 16 2013, 12:42PM

    It is established that wild boar do not need controlling in the UK. However, female wild boar in the Forest of Dean are currently being given a contraceptive vaccine The vaccine is known to be effective, and the study is merely to monitor any side effects. The deer population can also be easily controlled by contraception in food, and this has also been validated years ago, but those with vested interests in slaughtering our wildlife – whether for profit or just for sadistic entertainment – will always oppose such humane measures. A contraception study of elephants in the Kruger Park has similarly been proved effective, but there are too many trophy hunters etc. who exert the power to oppose such measures. Perhaps we should start putting contraception in the human water supply.

    |   5
  • suebadger  |  October 16 2013, 11:44AM

    Then stop using the forest as a giant dog toilet!!!!!!!!!! Leave our wildlife alone. And yes i do live in the forest.

    |   2
  • Douglasknows  |  October 16 2013, 11:25AM

    You ain't seen nothing yet. These boar will continue to escalate the forest right up until they run out of space. The current cull is pathetically low and must be expanded NOW. Need advice on this?...................just ask Australian people what its like living with an out of control boar population in the millions that are ruining farmland as well as scrubland.

    |   -7
  • transcendant  |  October 16 2013, 10:44AM

    It's lucky these people don't have to contend with tigers, lions, rhinos etc. - they would have become extinct long ago like the wolves. This sounds like another ploy by the Countryside Alliance press to encourage the persecution of our wildlife by recreational blood junkies. They must be getting increasingly worried since the successful prosecution of the Heythrop Hunt by the RSPCA, and they are doing their level best to suppress the truth about this government's attempt to wipe out our badger population.

    |   3
  • PollyP  |  October 16 2013, 10:23AM

    Having been confronted by boar whilst walking in the Forest of Dean really spoilt my walking there, especially with the dog. It was one of the reasons I stopped living in the Forestof Dean and moved out! The advice given by DEFRA and UK Wild Boar Trust. about how to respond when confronted by boar is fine if they are in front of you, however when you turn around and then there are a whole lot of boar, inc. piglets behind you, trying to get you off their patch (understandable! ) but they run faster than I do and my sight hound, she is always on a lead, is really keen to chase the boar then the situation is too much to manage. It is enjoyable now to walk where I live without continually be concerned about keeping my dog safe when being faced with dealing with the boar.

    |   -1
  • ReadTheSigns  |  October 16 2013, 10:18AM

    There are very clear signs up all around the forest telling owners to keep their dogs on leads and making it perfectly clear what may happen if you don't. Those who ignore the simple message are to blame for any injury to their dogs, and should be prosecuted accoringingly .

    |   7
  • intheForest  |  October 16 2013, 8:52AM

    Strong argument for shooting them (the Stupid Townies that is)