The countryside is an inspiring place to walk but it can also be little daunting when cows and bulls are grazing near your path. But the countryside is working environment and it's important to be mindful and respectful of farms and farm animals, particularly during spring when cattle are rearing their young. The Ramblers advise that when walking near cattle you:
- Stop, look and listen on entering a field. Look out for any animals and watch how they are behaving, particularly bulls or cows with calves
- Try to avoid getting between cows and their calves
- Be prepared for cattle to react to your presence, especially if you have a dog with you
- Move quickly and quietly, and if possible walk around the herd
- Keep your dog close, on a short lead, and under effective control
- Remember to close gates behind you when walking through fields containing livestock
- Report any frightening incidents or attacks to the Authority, the landowner, the Health & Safety Executive (HSE) and also the police if it's of a serious nature
Don’t hang onto your dog if you are threatened by cattle - let it go as the cattle will chase the dog and not you
Don’t put yourself at risk by walking close to cattle
Don’t panic or run – most cattle will stop before they reach you; if they follow just walk on quietly
Cattle on your path
If you find that cattle are obstructing the path, find another way by going around the cattle. If cattle are blocking a path through a field, you’re within your rights to find a safe way, away from the path to avoid them. You should then re-join the right of way as soon as possible – and when you consider it safe to do so.
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