Dog walkers keen on anti-fouling scheme

Larne Town Park.
Larne Town Park.

Fifty-two fixed penalty notices were issued by Mid and East Antrim Council for littering and dog fouling during a three month period last year.

The figures are contained in the Cleaner Neighbourhoods Report 2018/19 published by Keep Northern Ireland Beautiful.

By comparison, there were 65 issued in Antrim and Newtownabbey and 42 in Causeway Coast and Glens.

The report has indicated that 500 dog owners in Mid and East Antrim are now members of the Green Dog Walkers scheme, a community initiative launched last year to change attitudes about dog fouling. As a result, the number of complaints for dog fouling in 2018 in the borough has decreased.

Mid and East Antrim’s cleansing spend per head amounts to £14.99 compared to £11.29 in Antrim and Newtownabbey and £16.27 in Causeway Coast and Glens, and compared to an overall average in Northern Ireland of £18.09.

The report has also noted access difficulty for road sweepers. This occurred at 23 per cent of locations in Mid and East Antrim.

It has been reported that the majority of obstructions are parked cars preventing access to the kerb.

Dr. Ian Humphreys, CEO, Keep Northern Ireland Beautiful, stated: “Treading in dog fouling or wheeling your buggy through it is one of the most disgusting things that can happen when you are out and about. It carries serious health risks too, especially for children who can lose their sight simply because of a dog owner’s laziness.

“Our message is simple: pick up after your dog and put it in the bin. Or be ready to pay the fine.”