Bangor Pride Officer Sian Elin Powell and Gwynedd Council Tidy Towns Officer Jonathan Gwyn Neale have recently been raising awareness at Ysgol Cae Top and Ysgol Bro Dewi, following concerns about a small number of irresponsible dog owners who fail to clean up after their pets.
The children had an opportunity to view a DVD from Keep Wales Tidy and then to design their own poster. A selection from the children’s posters was then put together as the design for the awareness-raising sign - look out around Ysgol Cae Top and Ysgol Bro Dewi for these colourful signs.
Councillor Elin Walker Jones, who represents the Glyder ward in Bangor on Gwynedd Council, has been helping Bangor Pride to raise awareness of the problem locally.
She said: “The area has recently benefited from the investment of a new path which links the communities of Eithinog and Penrhos – and I have received numerous complaints about dog mess problems on this path as well as others in the area.
“Dog fouling is also a problem which affects the nearby schools with pupils and parents walking along the paths. It is totally unacceptable and disgusting. I’m working with the Council’s Tidy Towns Officer, Street Enforcement Wardens, discussing with the schools and trying to raise awareness amongst residents. By tackling the issue together we can reduce the problem. Contact me or the Council directly to ask for dog poop bag kit – they’re available for free.”
Cabinet Member Councillor Gareth Roberts, who leads the Council on Environmental issues added: “It’s totally unacceptable that some people let their dogs foul in public places, but this offence seems so much worse when children suffer from the actions of a negligent minority of people who continue to flout the law.
“To further address this increasing problem and tackle such antisocial behaviour I am considering strengthening the Council’s existing powers. Such measures will enable the Council to put more emphasis on this criminal activity, as well as other aspects of irresponsible dog ownership.
“Being a dog owner can be a great experience but at the same time it means responsibility and a duty on the owner to protect the wider community. Society has made it clear that the irresponsible minority must comply or otherwise face the consequences.”
Coming into contact with dog faeces can cause ‘toxocariasis’ which can lead to serious illness and even blindness. Children are particularly vulnerable to this.
It is a criminal offence not to clear up if a dog under your control has fouled in any public area. Offenders are liable to receive a £75 fixed penalty from Gwynedd Council’s Street Enforcement Wardens, Maritime and Country Parks Staff or Police Community Support Officers. Failure to pay the fine could lead to a court summons and a fine of up to £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 a public bin or take it home and dispose of it responsibly.
To request a free dog-poop bag dispenser, contact Gwynedd Council’s Tidy Towns Officer on 01766 771000 or e-mail email@example.com
Name and Shame
The public can also help by reporting those responsible by contacting Gwynedd Council’s Street Enforcement Team confidentially on 01766 771000, or by visiting www.gwynedd.gov.uk/do-it-online Gwynedd’s Tidy Towns Initiative is sponsored by the Welsh Government.