The project began last summer when Gwynedd Council’s Tidy Towns Officer visited the school to work with the children and create pictures highlighting the problem. The best pictures were then combined to create an image representing the children’s work. The final stage was to have the children’s design professionally printed onto permanent signs.
The result of the children’s efforts are colourful and hardwearing signs warning people of their responsibility to bag and bin their dog’s mess. These eye-catching signs have been erected on the school railings and at various locations around the village of Mynytho.
Ysgol Foel Gron Headteacher, Manon Haf Owen said: “Following a school walk the children expressed concern at the quantity of dog muck on paths and pavements in their area and that they had to watch their step during the walk. The children then had a classroom discussion about the problem and decided to email Gwynedd Council’s Tidy Towns Officer to voice their concern. The result was that we had an opportunity to create a set of colourful signs which have since been placed around the village.”
Pupils were keen to ensure that dogowners take responsibility for their pets and make sure that they clean-up after them.
Morgan, who’s aged ten said: “It’s really important for dog owners to clean up after their dogs as it is very dangerous stuff. It can give you diarrhoea and also make you blind. As our poster is so colourful it may help persuade people to clean up after their dogs.”
Nine-year old Kara added: “We’re really happy with the poster as the designer has taken little bits our work and joined them together very cleverly in the poster. We hope there will be less dog dirt around Mynytho from now on.”
Gwynedd Council’s Tidy Towns Officer, Jonathan Neale said:
“The response from the pupils was very encouraging and we were delighted to work with them with the aim of raising awareness of the need for dogowners to clean-up after their pets.
“It’s totally unacceptable that some people let their dogs foul public places, but this offence seems so much worse when children suffer from the irresponsibility of a minority of people who continue to break the law.”
Coming into contact with dog faeces can cause ‘toxocariasis’ which can lead to serious illness and even blindness. Children are particularly vulnerable to this.
Failing to clear up after your pet is a criminal offence and those found to be responsible could face an on-the-spot fine of £75 and even a court summons and a maximum fine of £1,000.
What can you do?
If you’re a dog owner make sure you always carry plenty of poop-scoop bags with you when you walk your dog. Wrapped dog mess can be put in any public bin, or take it home and dispose of it responsibly. To request your free dog poop clean up kit contact Gwynedd Council on 01766 771000 or visit: www.gwynedd.gov.uk/TidyTowns
Report dog fouling problems to Gwynedd Council on 01766 77100 or visit: www.gwynedd.gov.uk/do-it-online and click on ‘Report’. Any information given will be treated in strictest confidence.
To run an awareness and education campaign in your community, contact the Council’s Tidy Towns Officer on 01766 771000, e-mail: TidyTowns@gwynedd.gov.uk or visit the website: www.gwynedd.gov.uk/TidyTowns