“Enforcement needs to get tougher and I can tell you we will be tougher” – that’s what a borough councillor had to say on the dog fouling issue plaguing many Whitby streets.
Cllr Bill Chatt, who is the cabinet portfolio holder for public health and housing, said that while the majority of dog owners are responsible people, it’s time to crack down on those who fail to clean-up after their pooches.
His views won support from Cllr Helen Mallory, who added: “I think it’s right that we are tough on this because I think it’s one of the areas which 100% of our residents are in support of, because there is absolutely nothing worse for children or anybody, than if they stand in it or tread it into the house.
“So I think it’s absolutely right that we are tough on this and try and make people become more responsible.”
But despite the council’s cabinet pitching a tough approach towards offenders, latest figures show that only three people have actually been prosecuted for failing to pick up after their dog in the 2017-18 period.
Whitby Cllr Joe Plant asked for clarification on what the council is doing to combat the issue when the cabinet met.
He said: “It seems to be getting a bigger problem around the borough and a lot of people are still complaining about it.
“It’s getting worse and worse.”
Cllr Chatt said he was pleased to see that a recent offender who had his dog on a beach during a seasonal ban had been named and shamed in our sister title, The Scarborough News, and added that the £1,220 fine handed out by magistrates in court to the offender should deter others.
The Gazette has launched a campaign in recent weeks calling on people to help collar the culprits, and clean-up the town of dog mess, after the issue reached unprecedented levels.
The council needs your help to take action on the irresponsible dog mess offenders.
To report dog fouling culprits, visit scarborough.gov.uk/home/environment/dogs/dog-fouling online. Or call the council’s Customer First line: (01723) 232323.