Council propose new powers to deal with dog fouling

Swindon Borough Council is seeking to gauge public opinion on their proposed new powers for dealing with dog fouling in the borough.

The council wants to ask residents for their views on a proposed PSPO which, if approved, would enable Council officers and other partner agencies to issue Fixed Penalty Notices (FPNs) to people who let their dogs foul and then fail to clear up after their pets.

Dog fouling is a national issue with many unpleasant and dangerous effects, including potential health issues for small children. It has been estimated that a single gram of dog waste can contain 23 million faecal coliform bacteria, which are known to cause cramps, diarrhoea, intestinal illness, and serious kidney disorders in humans.  Additionally, dog faeces can cause Toxocariasis which can lead to blindness.

Currently, the Council has to gather significant evidence to prosecute dog owners through the courts, which takes up considerable officer time and expense.

The new PSPO would make the enforcement process simpler – giving hundreds of staff from the Council and partner organisations such as Police Community Support Officers the power to issue on-the-spot fines to irresponsible dog owners. The order also includes a ban on dogs being allowed in enclosed children’s play parks across the Borough, with the same penalty incurred if the order is broken.

People would be given a chance to pick up after their dogs before a fine is ordered.

People who refuse to pick up after their dog would be fined and their details noted.

Repeat offenders could face prosecution. FPNs are currently used by half of the councils in the country to tackle the issue of dog fouling.

The Council would like to hear your views on the changes proposed by completing the online survey below, here –