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Pick Up or Pay Up! Message to Ribble Valley Dog Owners

Published Tuesday, 01 July 2014

Pick up or pay up! That’s the message to irresponsible Ribble Valley dog owners who let their pets poop in public.

New orders requiring the borough’s dog owners to clean up after their pets and keep them under control in public come into force on 1 August.

The dog control orders will see pet owners face fines of up to £1,000 in a magistrates’ court or fixed penalty notices of £80 for anti-social pet behaviour.

And enforcement officers will be out and about over the coming months in a swoop on the irresponsible dog owners.

Five orders have been approved by the council’s community services committee following the ongoing problem of dog poop in public places, particularly on playing fields.

The orders require pet owners to remove dog faeces from public land, including footpaths and fields, keep their dogs on leads when instructed to do so by a dog enforcement officer and prohibit dogs from sports pitches, playing fields and children’s playgrounds.

Dogs must also be kept on a lead in Clitheroe Cemetery and no more than four can be walked in public at any one time.

Signs spelling out the new rules will be installed at relevant sites over the coming weeks.

Ribble Valley Borough Council’s head of environmental health, James Russell, said: “Complaints about dog issues are the second highest received by the council each year and residents are demanding action on the issue.

“Most dog owners are responsible and pick up after their pets, but there is an irresponsible minority who do not and the new orders will give us greater powers to deal with them.

“Ignorance of the law is not an excuse and the message is simple: The days of allowing dogs to foul in public are over, so pick up or pay up.”

Ribble Valley Borough Council receives over 200 complaints about dog fouling and spends £30,000 disposing of it each year.

Dog faeces take two months to break down and can give humans a number of infections, including toxocariasis, which can cause breathing difficulties, red and painful eyes, or clouded vision, particularly in young people.

To report dog fouling or for further information, contact Ribble Valley Borough Council on 01200 425111.

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