Page last updated at 15:57 GMT, Sunday, 7 March 2010

Dogs and sheep drown after Beesands cliff fall

Beesands and Start Point
With a force five easterly wind, sea conditions were very rough

Three animals have drowned after falling from cliffs in Devon.

The alarm was raised with Brixham Coastguard at 1120 GMT by a family out walking near Beesands at Start Bay.

The family's two dogs, a Jack Russell terrier and a Pointer, had been chasing a sheep, when all three went over the cliff edge.

Despite a rescue attempt by the Dartmouth inshore lifeboat and the coastguard cliff rescue team, all three animals drowned.

"The advice is to have dogs on a lead, especially when there are sheep about," a Maritime and Coastguard Agency spokesman said.

"The animals had very little chance of keeping their heads above water in very rough seas."

All three animals were recovered.

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