Dog poo patrols at Weston-super-Mare
By Prue_Reid | Saturday, October 27, 2012, 09:24
Traffic warden could issue more than a parking fine from this month as they have been trained to catch people not clearing up their pet's poo.
More than 30 North Somerset Council staff is now trained to issue penalty notices if they catch dog owners failing to pick up their animal's mess.
The council has trained all its environmental health, car parking attendants and area officers in order to send a tough message to rogue owners.
Earlier this month, the council launched a campaign to encourage people to report anyone they see failing to pick up dog's mess.
By working with the local community, the council hopes to increase the number of irresponsible dog owners it prosecutes.
The council has also asked town and parish councils and schools to display campaign posters warning people that they face prosecution if they don't bag mess.
Those caught on the spot can be fined £75 and also potentially face a £1,000 fine if prosecuted. But more help is needed to identify serial offenders.
The council are already investigating several reports of people not picking up and are confident that these will lead to more fines and prosecutions.
North Somerset Council executive member with responsibility for environmental protection Peter Bryant said that most dog owners were responsible and did pick up after their animals but there was a small percentage who were polluting our streets and open areas.
Mr Bryant said: "Allowing your dog to foul and not picking it up is wrong on so many levels.
"Not only does dog's mess pose a health hazard but it is a disgusting anti social practice that costs the tax payer money to clear up.
"For the sake of the whole community we would urge owners to pick up after their pets. If you don't - we will fine you."
This summer the council successfully prosecuted a North Somerset resident who persistently allowed their dog to foul in a public place without clearing it up. Magistrates ordered the offender to pay £325.
If you see someone not picking up their dog's mess then you can report it to the council.
Either fill in the online form by clicking HERE or call 01934 888802.
Anyone witnessing an incident should note:
- date and time;
- any pattern to the behaviour (same times, people or places);
- description of dog;
- description of owner; and
- car registration number, if used.
The more information provided, the more likely it is that the offender will be caught.