People power to tackle ‘epidemic’ of dog poo

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A TASKFORCE team of volunteers should be set up to tackle the district’s dog fouling epidemic, it has been claimed.

Bishopbriggs Community Council says dog fouling is getting worse, because East Dunbartonshire Council does not have the resources to target selfish pet owners who refuse to clean up after their mutts.

The group is now urging the council to set up a new squad of community volunteers who can support the local authority’s environmental wardens by patrolling problem areas and issuing fines.

A spokesperson for the community council said: “This is a massive problem, especially for families.

“In Cleddens Park the pathway children use to go to school is covered in mess.

“The council does not have enough people to collect fines. If we could turn this into a social enterprise we could get the public involved. Something has to be done to tackle this problem and I think residents would be willing to get involved.”

The Herald has been inundated with complaints about dog fouling. However, only one person was fined for failing to clean up their pet’s mess in East Dunbartonshire last year.

Kenny Simpson, head of housing and community services at the council, said: “We are aware that dog fouling is an environmental problem and we are aiming to launch a campaign to tackle the issue in June in conjunction with a number of partners.

“The council has four environmental wardens who have, as part of their duties, the task of trying to deal with the ever increasing number of complaints raised. The wardens who cover the Bishopbriggs area will attend Cleddens Park and check if there are sufficient litter bins and dog fouling signs. If required, they will also arrange for sanitisation of the area.

“In Falkirk, community groups run a successful initiative called ‘Green Dog Walkers’ - which is a non-confrontational, friendly way to change attitudes about dog fouling. We would be interested in meeting with the community council to discuss the possibility of piloting a similar scheme that involves volunteers to help wardens patrol areas.”

“If members of the public witness any dog fouling incidents, they can contact the council on 0300 123 4510 with information including locations, dates and times of the incidents which may prove helpful in tackling the issue and catching offenders.”

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