Gwynedd cracks down on dog mess: county-wide campaign gets underway
Residents of communities in Gwynedd have recently been voicing their concerns about the presence of dog mess on streets and paths in their areas. Communities in Bangor, Bethesda, Blaenau Ffestiniog, Llanrug and Porthmadog / Tremadog are among the communities who have reported problems – with particular concerns raised regarding the problem on paths used as routes to schools.
Gwynedd councillors in the communities involved were alerted to the problems by concerned residents early in the new year and these concerns were then relayed to Gwynedd’s Street Enforcement and Street Cleaning Departments for action. The affected areas will receive increased visits by Street Enforcement Wardens and Gwynedd Tidy Towns is also involved with raising awareness.
Gwynedd Council’s Highways and Municipal Cabinet Member, Councillor Gareth Griffith, said: “Dog fouling on public land is our number one complaint, and winter brings particular problems with the dark early mornings and evenings providing cover for offenders. And as the campaign’s eye-catching poster says, there really is ‘no excuse’ for offenders – ‘Just put the poo in the bin!’”
Many dogs are infected with parasites which can be harmful to people, especially children. Toxocariasis is a disease caused when the eggs of toxocara worms are transferred from dogs to people through infected dog mess or soil. Infection can lead to illness and even blindness.
Councillor Rheinallt Puw, Gwynedd Council Member for Bethesda’s Ogwen ward said: “There are a small number of persistent dog fouling offenders here in Bethesda who don’t seem at all concerned about the effect that their carelessness is having on the health and wellbeing others. I am therefore very pleased that the Gwynedd Councils Street Enforcement Team and Tidy Towns are helping to track down the offenders and to raise awareness locally.”
Councillor Annwen Daniels, who represents the Bowydd a Rhiw and Tanygrisiau ward in Blaenau Ffestiniog added: “We as a community have to work together to ensure that everyone realises that failing to clean up after their dog is socially unacceptable and will not be tolerated. The irresponsible minority of dog owners who fail to do this are letting their community down as well as breaking the law.”
Councillor Nia Jeffreys, who represents the Porthmadog East ward said: “There are many scenic walks in the Porthmadog area and it is extremely disappointing to find that small number of irresponsible dog owners allow their pets to foul everywhere and ruin things for everyone, as well as compromising their health and safety.”
Councillor Keith Jones, who represents the Hirael Ward in Bangor added: “It is disgraceful that anyone can be so inconsiderate to allow their dog to foul on an area that is so close to a primary school. I sincerely hope that Gwynedd Council’s Street Enforcement Officers are able to track down the culprits. It is also up to us as a community to help the enforcement officers by being prepared to name and shame these inconsiderate offenders.”
In Gwynedd it is a criminal offence to take a dog onto designated children’s play areas, school grounds, sports pitches and certain beaches (April-September) or to allow your dog to foul any public space. Offenders are liable to receive a £100 fixed penalty, with failure to pay potentially leading to a court summons and a fine of up to £1,000.
For more information regarding Gwynedd Council’s Tidy Towns scheme, contact the team on 01766 771 000 or send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org
Tidy Towns is funded by a grant from the Welsh Government with the aim of improving the quality of the local environment