Melissa Kite Melissa Kite

Why it pays to be rude to ramblers

The nicer you are, the more abominably they treat you

I’ve bought so many warning signs off the internet, I might have to learn how to make them myself [Nancy Haggarty]

If the novelty of going for a walk doesn’t wear thin for the marauding masses soon, I am going to have to buy a laminator. I’ve bought so many warning signs off the internet telling townies what they can’t do around livestock, I might have to learn how to make signs myself.

A bulk order of ‘Dogs Must Be on a Lead at All Times’ had to be placed during lockdown as we started to attract people who would rather be at Westfield shopping centre.

I affixed them along the fence line inside my field, along with traffic cones and stripy roadworks barriers, because although walkers should not be in my field, once they stray off the footpath and go in there you cannot assume they will know what to do about it.

In other words, I am having to tell people not to let their dog savage my horses once they have broken the law repeatedly and gone through two gates and four lines of electric tape to get themselves into a position where their dog is illegally near my horses in the first place.

The builder b, meanwhile, affixed a ‘dogs on lead’ sign on the driveway to his smallholding on a huge wooden placard emblazoned with a neon warning triangle so that when you go down there it looks as though you are entering a nuclear facility.

As with cyclists, the nicer you are to ramblers the more abominably they treat you

Even this doesn’t stop them, and he still gets walkers who let their cockapoos loose to run under the electric tape to yap round the legs of his coloured cobs.

No amount of explaining that the dogs may not survive makes the day trippers think twice about behaving like this. If you tell them to please put their dog on a lead it is a red rag to a bull.

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