A new unit opens to deal with the issue of stray dogs in Longford.

Longford Urban Council with the Irish Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ISPCA) as advisors has opened a Dog Control Unit, assisted by a government grant of four and a half thousand pounds.

Some have questioned the logic of financing a dog shelter in the current economic climate. This is an investment that will benefit the wider rural community maintains Gerry Shields of the ISPCA. The Irish Farmers Association (IFA) estimate that over two million sheep are lost every year to dogs wandering onto farmland,

What we're trying is to do is try and reduce that figure.

Jeffrey Lefroy of Carriglass Manor is unfortunately all too familiar with attacks on his flock, which cause distress to the sheep and in a most recent case a lamb was killed,

Five dogs had them penned in…when one weakened they would then worry it.

Longford's Dog Control Unit is the first of many new regional pounds to be established. Many other counties are struggling with stray dogs, and the issue of rabies is to be avoided at all costs says Shields,

The danger of rabies is something we take seriously.

An RTÉ News report broadcast on 22 February in 1982.