Waterford bids to tackle dog fouling

Waterford Council is to commence a ‘softly-softly’ approach in conjunction with enforcement measures in a bid to eradicate dog fouling across the city and county.

Waterford bids to tackle dog fouling

The measure will be combined with other initiatives such as signage and the Green Dog Walking community scheme in a determined bid to eradicate the problem.

Addressing April’s Dungarvan-Lismore Municipal District meeting, director of services for environment and water Fergus Galvin said the council would dispatch two full-time wardens along popular dog-walking routes.

Mr Galvin said the wardens will be tasked with “approaching dog walkers in a relaxed, informal, way and advising them of the need to clean up after their dogs”.

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“They will carry dog litter bags and provide them to walkers along with recommendations on how to use and dispose of waste, if required,” he added.

He said if dog walkers were to ignore the recommendations and were subsequently found responsible for dog fouling, fines will be issued. Where applicable, prosecutions could follow, the director advised.

The meeting was told the council had already conducted a survey of dog-walking routes and had compiled a list of the most littered areas.

They and other routes would repeatedly be patrolled in an effort to impart the ‘no fouling’ message and to ensure consciousness among dog owners.

The council, he said, was also keen to hear of other areas where dog littering was a problem.

Labour councillor John Pratt said he was particularly concerned about “the area near the school in Tallow” about which he had received numerous reports from the pubic.

Mr Galvin said the council’s fresh approach would coincide with the reintroduction of last year’s Green Dog Walking programme.

The scheme encourages responsible dog walkers to ‘take the pledge’ to clean up after their animals.

Green Dog Walking programmes, which are becoming increasingly common across the country, are council-supported initiatives in which volunteers clean up after their own dogs but carry extra dog bags and advisory literature, while encouraging other dog walkers to behave responsibly.

The volunteers wear an identifiable armband or put the Green Dog Walker collars on their dogs. Participants must be a constituted community group and plan at least three events/campaigns for the year to encourage cross-community ‘green and clean’ dog walking behaviour.

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