Wandsworth Warns - Owners Need To Heed New Dog Orders

following the introduction of dog control orders in the borough

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The orders incorporate new rules to promote responsible dog ownership and ensure that owners who allow their pets to cause problems can be tackled swiftly and effectively

New signs have been installed across the borough so that owners are fully aware of the new rules and their responsibilities.

Signs have been attached to lamposts in town centres, residential streets and other parts of the public highway so that owners know the specific rules that apply in those areas.

Signs have also been erected to outline the rules that now apply in the borough's parks and open spaces. 

The orders were introduced following extensive public consultation and mainly replaced a series of outdated bye-laws - but also to cover areas that were not previously regulated.

The main change is the introduction of 'poop-scoop' rules across the entire borough. Owners can no longer permit their dogs to foul in the gutter or the road surface without removing it.  Dogs also need to be kept on a lead whilst being walked anywhere on the public highway in places like town centres and residential streets.

In parks and open spaces, common-sense places like children's playgrounds, tennis courts, sports pitches, lakes and bowling greens will continue to be designated as dog free areas – as they were previously – but dogs must also be kept on leads in very specific areas such as car parks and outdoor eating areas. In virtually all other places they can be exercised as normal.

Environment spokesman Sarah McDermott said:
"The new orders are now in place and so it is important that dog owners familiarise themselves with the new arrangements that apply in the places they normally exercise their pets.

"The biggest changes are the new requirements for all dogs to be kept on a lead whilst being walked anywhere on the public highway and also the extension of poop scoop laws to cover the entire borough and not just our parks and open spaces.

"What this means is that owners will have to clear up after their dogs, wherever this happens. It is no longer an option for dogs to leave a mess behind in gutters.  Most responsible dog owners already follow these straightforward and sensible rules and prevent their pets from causing any problems.  But the changes mean that careless and irresponsible dog owners can now be targeted with much greater effect."

For more information about the new dog control orders, including precise details and maps of where they will apply, visit www.wandsworth.gov.uk/dogs.

August 12, 2010