27 fines issued for dog fouling in east Suffolk over five years
- Credit: Archant
A total of 27 fines were issued to dog owners for their pets fouling in east Suffolk over the last five years, a study has found.
Research by pet retailer Kennel Store revealed East Suffolk Council issued the highest number of fines for dog fouling throughout Norfolk and Suffolk.
There were three fines issued by Ipswich Borough Council in the same timeframe, while data was not available for Babergh, Mid Suffolk and West Suffolk councils.
Barnsley Metropolitan Borough Council had the highest number of number of fines in the data at 445 over the last five years.
James Mallinder, East Suffolk Council's cabinet member for the environment, praised dog owners who clean up after their pets.
He said: “We are grateful to responsible dog owners who realise the importance of clearing up after their pets by leaving the home equipped for a walk with a poop scoop or bag, before disposing of waste either when they return, or by using one of the council's many, clearly marked dog waste bins found across the district.
“An inconsiderate minority fail to clean up after their dogs and leave behind an unsightly, deeply unpleasant and potentially dangerous mess.
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"The lack of a nearby bin to dispose of dog waste is not a reasonable excuse for failing to clean up. It is absolutely unacceptable behaviour.
“We would urge anyone who sees a dog owner repeatedly allowing their pet to foul our streets to contact Environmental Protection Team.
"Where there is a persistent problem, officers will try to identify irresponsible dog owners.
“A Public Space Protection Order (PSPO) makes it an offence to fail to clear up after your dog if it fouls any land that is open to the air and to which the public have access.
“Inconsiderate dog owners could face a fixed penalty fine of £80 or a fine of up to £1,000 upon conviction in the courts.”
Neil Hutchinson, from Kennel Store said: "Dog fouling is illegal in the UK and the law states that being unaware a dog has fouled or not having a suitable bag is not a reasonable excuse, and could result in dog walkers being penalised. Not only this, but it is extremely dangerous as contact with dog excrement can cause toxocariasis – a nasty infection that can lead to dizziness, nausea, asthma and even blindness or seizures."