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Dog walker killed by herd of cattle

A vet has been trampled to death by a herd of cows as she walked her dogs in a field in the Pennines.

Liz Crowsley may have been trying to protect her two pet dogs, who escaped injury and were found running free near her body. The herd are though to have been panicked by the woman's dogs while she was walking the Penine Way

Miss Crowsley, a regular walker in the Yorkshire Dales, was dead when a holidaymaker found her around noon on Sunday, shortly after the incident. Police said she was walking in Wensleydale, North Yorkshire, with her spaniel and collie dogs when she was killed. 'She was surrounded by a herd of cows and calves and as a result of the dogs being present, the cattle reacted in an aggressive manner,' said a police spokesman. Miss Crowsley appears to have been trapped against a dry-stone wall before being trampled. Miss Crowsley was head vet at the Willows Veterinary Hospital in Hartford, Cheshire.

A holidaymaker staying in the area said: ‘My wife had earlier seen a woman carrying a stick and walking up the field with two dogs.A little later we were upstairs when we heard a strange bellowing sound coming from the cows in a nearby field. I knew something was wrong so I went outside, picked up a wooden post and went to the cows and shooed them away. Then I saw a woman on the ground, with her head bent at an unnatural angle. I checked her but there was no pulse.'

Ken Buck of the National Farmer’s Union said the cows would have seen the dogs as predators. ‘The cows would harass the dogs and most dogs would be fearful and would hide behind their owners for protection. The cattle want to get to the dogs and the dogs want to get away. It's best for the owner in this situation to just drop the leads and let the dogs go’

Last year, another dog walker, Sandra Pearce, was killed in a similar incident near the village of South Elmham, in Suffolk. She was trampled after trying to bring her two dogs under control.

Christine Ormsby

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