Parent issues dog mess plea

A Dromore parent has flagged up concerns that an increasing amount of dog dirt may be making its way into Central Primary School on children’s shoes.

The stretch of footpath around Dromore Cathedral is just one of the latest areas in the town where locals have condemned the amount of dog mess.

Local parent Andrew Leckey said: “My daughter goes to school in Dromore Cental, and we walk from the Cathedral hall car-park round to school each morning. On the relatively small stretch of footpath between the car-park and the mini-roundabout there is an increasing amount of dog dirt.

“With the number of kids that walk that way each morning, and seeing a lot of dirty footprints through the mess, it’s obvious that the dirt will be making its way into the school.”

Mr Leckey urged dog-owners to start cleaning up after their pets.

Meanwhile Banbridge District Council said it was taking steps to address the problem.

A spokesperson said: “Areas within Dromore that have been highlighted to target and tackle the problem of dog fouling include the Barban Hill/Denfort Lodge, Rampart Street, Laganvale and Gallows Street areas where signage has been installed along with cameras in two areas to record instances of fouling.

“The Mound area has also had signage deployed and a dog foul bin requested. Primrose Hill has erected signage and received a letter drop to residents and signage is due to be placed on Jubilee Road the week beginning March 2.

“It appears that while there are many responsible dog-owners in Dromore, there are a number who still persist in the anti-social behaviour of not picking up after their dog whilst out walking or in allowing their dog out to run freely in the knowledge that it will foul on these occasions.

“By doing this they are making the conscious decision to leave dog mess on the pavement for others to walk in or to clean up, showing complete disregard for their communities, neighbours and children.”

The spokesperson said wardens had observed dog-walkers were more likely to clean up after their dog if they believed others would see them and approach them otherwise.

“It seems that some dog owners will leave their dog’s foul behind them if they think no one is watching them,” he said. “The Council has provided many dog foul and litter bins in public areas and along popular dog walking areas throughout Dromore for the disposal of such bags.”

The council confirmed that since the beginning of the year there had been five fixed penalties for dog related offences in the Dromore area; however none had been for fouling.