Letters: We must catch all dog fouling the culprits and act now

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Your headline regarding dog fouling of the streets and public places of Whitby is very apt.

In old police parlance, these offending dog owners must indeed be collared and prosecuted.

I say offending owners because the dog is innocent in all this and will, if permitted by its handler, choose wherever it wishes.

It is not enough that responsible owners pick up after their dog.

Except for the most unfortunate among us who tread in what has not been picked up, the rest of us pedestrians are treading in the smears left behind from what has been picked up and trampling it into shops, cafes, pubs, restaurants, even doctors’ surgeries.

Which raises the point as to whether it constitutes a health hazard.

Scarborough and Whitby Council employees engaged in keeping our streets in order will tell us it is and as such they are not allowed to deal with it.

Dogs are supposed to be identity chipped and as yet the licensing system has not been reintroduced in the UK, but what good would it do when there is only one dog warden to patrol the whole area, oh and another one shortly to be employed.

But there is a simple answer to the problem, to be enshrined in national law:

• All dogs to be on a lead no longer than vertically from its collar to the handlers hand at all times on any part of any highway.

• No dog to be walked on any pavement other than along the kerb on the outside of its handler unless crossing the highway.

• No dog to be allowed by owners to mess anywhere other than in the gutter of the highway.

• No dogs allowed on any pedestrian only areas or limited vehicle access areas or parks or on grass verges.

• All dog mess to be immediately picked up by the dog’s handler and deposited in bins approved by the council for safe collection by suitably protected operatives.

Such regulation would not only deal with dog owning residents but dog owning visitors.

We could of course apply to be twinned with Dodge City.

Malcolm Jones

Crescent Avenue