Hampshire & Isle of Wight

New Forest cattle to be de-horned after walkers attacked

Amelia Borrelli
Image caption Amelia Borrelli spent a week in hospital after being gored by a cow

Livestock owners in the New Forest are being asked to remove horns from their cattle after an increase in the number of walkers being attacked.

Dog walker Amelia Borrelli, 86, spent a week in hospital after a cow plunged its horn into her leg in July.

She said she and her dog may have come between the cow and its calf.

The Commoners Defence Association has written to 200 people registered to turn out cattle on the forest, asking them to "de-horn" their livestock.

Association chairman Tony Hockley said the move followed several "dangerous incidents" in the last two years.

He said: "If someone is injured by a commoner's grazing animal, it is deeply distressing for everyone involved.

"This was the one step that our association felt we could take ourselves that might mitigate the harm done by the situation in which the New Forest now finds itself."

British breeds such as English Longhorns and Highlands will be exempt because their horns are an essential characteristic and there have not been any incidents involving those breeds.

Image caption Forestry England has placed warning signs at car parks

Mr Hockley said the association would step up its campaign for improved signage about appropriate behaviour around livestock and the control of dogs.

You may also be interested in:

Ms Borrelli, from Fritham in Hampshire, said she may have inadvertently come between the cow and a calf hidden in undergrowth when she was gored on 20 July.

She said: "It banged me to the ground, drew back its head and ripped my jeans from the ankle up to mid-thigh, plunged its horn into my thigh, came on up ripping my clothes."

She said the tennis ball sized wound was "very, very deep" and came within millimetres of two arteries.

More on this story

Related Internet links

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites