Dog owners try to avoid a fine mess

dog owners have been warned to clean up their act before new Dog Control Orders are imposed which could see them face a £1,000 fine.

A consultation by Kirklees Council will end this month into the introduction of four different types of dog orders, aimed at making owners take more responsibility for their pets.

The four orders cover failing to remove dog mess, keeping dogs on leads on certain parts of council land, keeping dogs on leads when told to do so by a warden and excluding dogs from skate parks, children’s play areas and tennis courts.

Dog owners falling foul of the orders face fixed penalty fines of £75 – discounted to £50 if paid within seven days.

Failure to pay would result in a court fine of up to £1,000 per offence.

At the Spen Valley area committee on Tuesday, Rob Dalby from Kirklees Council’s environmental services told owners they were responsible for clearing their pets’ mess.

“Dog fouling is a big problem around the Mann Dam,” he said.

“The formal consultation on this runs until Thursday, after that we have had 600 responses to go through and they are increasing as the days go by.

“The hard part is making it work, which is down to community engagement on our part.”

He added that enforcement would be in the hands of PCSOs and dog wardens.

Parts of the Spen Valley Greenway have been blighted by dog owners picking up their pets’ mess and simply leaving the bags of dog dirt on the floor or tied to fences.

Owners caught doing this could also be prosecuted for littering, Mr Dalby added.

Coun David Sheard (Lab, Heckmondwike) encouraged people to use council bins to dispose of the bagged waste.

He said: “We don’t have dog bins because dog mess is classed as clinical waste and costs £10 per bin to empty them.”

Coun Kath Pinnock (Lib-Dem, Cleckheaton) said dog owners needed to take more responsibility.

She said: “We need to get the message out that people can dispose of the waste in standard bins.”