Appeal to ‘selfish’ dog owners as scale of fouling is revealed
Keep Scotland Beautiful is calling for dog owners to change their behaviour in response to a reported increase in bagged dog fouling during the Covid-19 pandemic.
Following a call-out at the end of April for daily exercisers to record and #TurdTag the scale of the dog fouling problem in their local communities, evidence has now been collated highlighting the severity of the issue.
It also exposes the number of dog owners only doing ‘half the jobbie’ – bagging the poo and then littering it instead of binning it.
The snapshot data from more than 100 volunteers across Scotland surveying 100 metres in their community reveals:
• an average of 12 dog poo incidents per 100 metres; and
• 1.5 times more bagged and littered dog poos than those left unbagged.
Over the last few weeks, at a time when people have been spending more time in their own communities and local greenspaces cycling, walking or jogging, the issue of dog fouling has reared its head again. People are seeing the unsightly and illegal act of dog fouling more because they have the time to notice, and they are out in areas local to them more often at a slower pace.
Paul Wallace, Campaign and Social Innovation Manager at Keep Scotland Beautiful, said, “Our snapshot survey highlights the increasing number of bagged poos littered across Scotland.
“So, we are urging those who start to do the right thing, and pick up after their dogs, not to do ‘half the jobbie’. If you make the effort to take a bag and pick up the poo, you need to take the next step and bin it or take it home and bin it there.
“Leaving your dog’s poo on the ground is illegal, but littering a bagged poo is also illegal! We’re pleading with dog owners to stop being so selfish.
“We have all had more time to spend in our local communities over the last couple of months – and that has increased people’s awareness of this illegal, unsightly and dangerous habit.”
With local authorities having to temporarily reduce or suspend some services, due to the Covid-19 crisis, to prioritise essential services to protect public health, bagging and binning, or taking your dog waste home at this time is vitally important.
Alex Jackson, Head of Campaigns at Dogs Trust, said: “It’s so important that the small minority of dog owners that don’t pick up after their dog do so.
“For dog owners who are unaware, they should know that they can deposit poo bags in any public bin, and not only those designated for dog poo. We’d like to see local authorities moving dog owners towards the right course of action by adding more signs which explain what they should do, and installing more bins in dog fouling hotspots.”
Find out more about how you can take action on dog fouling at www.keepscotlandbeautiful.org