Questions are being asked about an increase in dog fouling in part of Hawick previously relatively untroubled by that problem.
Hawick and Hermitage councillor Davie Paterson has been contacted by residents of the town’s Melgund Place concerned about a recent increase in the amount of dog dirt being deposited there.
Some have suggested that, because the problem isn’t a long-standing one, it could be down to a new resident allowing a pet to foul and not picking up after it.
Mr Paterson, a long-time campaigner against dog fouling, is keen to get to the bottom of the mystery and is appealing to townsfolk to report any irresponsible owners not cleaning up after their pets.
He said: “People in the Melgund Place area tell me that they have never had a problem with dogs fouling in this area before. It just seems to be a new thing, and they want it stopped now.
“They are wondering if it is someone new to this area that is allowing their dogs to foul and failing to clean up after them.
“I have contacted Scottish Borders Council and the police about this, and I would urge members of the public if they witness any dog owner failing to clean up after their pet to please contact the council or the police with as much information as possible about the owners and the dog and time of day that they witnessed it.
“I have passed the information on from a concerned constituent, so hopefully we will get some action soon.”
A council spokesman said: “Dog fouling is unpleasant and a health hazard. Most dog owners are responsible and clean up after their dogs, but some don’t. It is our policy to deal with those that do not.
“You must clean up after your dog on pavements, roads, footpaths, parks, football pitches, communal land, back greens, stairs, closes and any land that is open to the public.
“People who do not clean up after their dog can receive a fixed penalty of £80.”
“People who do not clean up after their dog are committing an offence under the 2003 Dog Fouling (Scotland) Act.”
The council encourages the public to report incidents of dog fouling by calling 0300 100 1800 or by going online to www.scotborders.gov.uk/info/20052/environmental_problems/583/dog_fouling