Macclesfield is the latest town to be targeted in Cheshire East Council’s ongoing crackdown on the anti-social nuisance of dog fouling.
The Council is spearheading a cross-community initiative to improve the behaviour of irresponsible dog owners.
One owner has already been issued with a fixed penalty notice for failing to clean up after her dog in the town’s South Park, which is popular with families and young people.
Known as ‘Dog Watch,’ the campaign includes a public presence on high streets across the Borough, to draw attention to the problem of dog fouling and to encourage a greater sense of responsibility on the part of owners who fail to clean up after their pets.
The Council has set up a stall at the front of Park Royal School in Bond Street, Macclesfield, to highlight the nuisance of dog fouling in the Borough’s streets and open spaces.
Officers from the communities and enforcement teams are also talking to school children as part of an ongoing education strategy and have praised Park Royal School, where pupils have already put up a banner drawing attention to the nuisance and appealing to dog owners to take a responsible attitude.
The week-long campaign in Macclesfield, which follows a successful campaign in Congleton, highlights the serious health hazards from dog fouling and the importance of clearing up after pets.
It also seeks the support of communities in tackling the problem and is engaging with pet owners by offering a microchipping service and health check for canines.
The Council will work in partnership with community groups, schools, sports clubs and businesses to spread the message. Similar events will take place around the Borough in the months ahead.
The Council’s community enforcement officers have been engaging with residents to discuss responsible dog ownership and the importance of cleaning up after their pets.
Councillor Paul Bates, Cabinet member for communities and health, said: “This is a concerted, ongoing campaign and I urge dog owners and other residents to support us in trying to rid our streets of this nuisance.
“We encourage all in the community to work together to free our town centres, residential areas, parks and open spaces from the anti-social nuisance of dog fouling.
“We have a minority of irresponsible owners who are discrediting the reputation of the majority. We share the frustrations of responsible dog owners and those affected by such irresponsible behaviour.
“As an enforcing and ‘residents first’ authority, Cheshire East Council is urging all dog owners to take a responsible attitude when exercising their pets and to make sure they clean up after their animals.
“Children in particular can be susceptible to diseases carried in dog faeces, so it is imperative that we seek the cooperation of the public and dog owners in trying to eradicate this dreadful nuisance.
“Some owners need to be reminded that there is a law allowing local councils to fine dog owners who fail to clean up after their pets and the fixed penalty is £50, with far higher fines possible if the owner is taken to court.
“The Council will be tough on residents and visitors to the Borough who selfishly cause issues for others by failing to clean up after their dog.”
Residents, businesses and community groups can help to tackle this problem by reporting dog fouling on 0300 123 5021.
The Council will target specific areas, with high-visibility patrols, including areas popular with visitors from outside the Borough and will advise people on how to report offenders.
The ‘Dog Watch’ team will be moving on to other parts of the Borough in the weeks ahead.