Tewkesbury Borough Council is tightening its rules on dog control – and reminding dog owners to always clean up after their dog. The council has implemented a new Public Space Protection Order (PSPO) to address the problem of dog fouling in public areas within the borough, aiming to ensure that everyone in charge of a dog acts responsibly by cleaning up its waste.
Thankfully, most people are picking up after their pets, but the small few who don’t are continuing to risk the health of others. Dog faeces carries the risk of disease, particularly Toxocariasis – an infection caused by roundworm parasites.
The PSPO, which will remain in place for three years, replaces the previous order for dog control and includes additional offences. As in the earlier order, it is an offence for dog walkers to not clean up after their dog in any public place, and to fail to have with them a means of picking up dog waste. In addition, the new PSPO prohibits dog walkers from letting their dog into any children’s playpark designated as a dog-free area. It also makes it an offence to refuse to provide personal details if requested by a council officer, or to give false details.
To enforce the order, officers from the council’s environmental health team will patrol areas that have been identified as particularly affected by dog fouling, and anyone failing to comply with its terms could be fined up to £100, or prosecuted where this is in the public interest.
Tewkesbury Borough Council’s lead member for clean and green environment, Councillor Jim Mason, said: “The majority of dog owners act responsibly by cleaning up after their pets and will not be affected at all by our new Public Space Protection Order. However, dog fouling is nevertheless a matter of great concern to our residents – it is not only a matter of the unpleasant mess it causes, but it can also pose a dangerous health risk, particularly to children.
“I’m therefore very pleased that our latest PSPO is taking a stronger approach. It allows us to legally enforce the measures we have put in place to tackle the issue and deal with those who ignore their responsibilities.”
Notes: Certain groups are exempt from the PSPO, namely those who are registered blind and those with certain disabilities who rely on assistance dogs.