Dog fouling problem continues

Castlewellan Road, Banbridge.
Castlewellan Road, Banbridge.

Dog owners are being urged yet again to clean up after their dogs when out walking in Banbridge.

Local walkers say they are “fed up” having to dodge dog mess left behind.

One responsible dog walker says he is disgusted by the amount of dog fouling on the Castlewellan Road and at Havelock Park.

So much so he now prefers to drive out of the town to walk his pet in places such as Lurgan Park and Craigavon where he says dog fouling “isn’t a problem”.

He said: “I am a responsible dog walker and I think these people who don’t clean up after their dogs are disrespectful.

“We are all suffering because of them and I am disgraced by the state of the pavements in Banbridge. Such a mess is being made and it’s about time these people sort it out.”

Owners who do not clean up after their dog can receive a £50 fixed penalty notice, however persistent offenders can receive a fine of up to £500.

A spokesperson for Banbridge District Council explained that a number of fixed penalty notices have been issued on the strength of evidence gathered by the cameras.

“In various areas where dog fouling and environmental crime persists CCTV cameras have been put into operation. These cameras can be used to record offending individuals and their dogs plus identify times when offences are committed so the wardens may be deployed at the right time. The wardens also carry a harness camera to record instances of fouling,” said the spokesperson.

The council employ Dog and Environmental Wardens to patrol the district “investigating and acting on incidents of dog fouling”.

As well as the warden patrols the council have introduced a number of other deterrents.

The council spokesperson said: “The council have introduced the use of signage and stencilling highlighting the issue of dog fouling in various locations across the district.

“The signs inform that the area is being monitored by the council’s Dog and Environmental Wardens and act as a warning to irresponsible dog owners.

Since the introduction of the signs, the council has reported a marked reduction in the number of complaints received regarding dog fouling however a “small number of owners still do not clean up after their animals”.

If you aware of incidents of dog fouling you can report this to the council’s Environmental Health Department on 4066 0606.