The Vale of Glamorgan Council’s cabinet is to consider today the introduction of a “Public Spaces Protection Order” (PSPO) to clamp down on anti-social behaviour by dog-owners.
The council is to discuss starting the process of introducing a “PSPO” for dog controls in across the Vale of Glamorgan (including Penarth) under Section 59 of the Anti-Social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act 2014.
The first step is to undertake a statutory consultation exercise with members of the public
and what the council calls “other relevant stakeholders” – which will be carried out over 8 weeks .
It’s proposed that there should be:-
- A prohibition of dog fouling in all public places with the Vale of Glamorgan
- A requirement for a person in charge of a dog at all times to carry bags or suitable
means for the disposal of dog faeces.
- Every person in control of a dog most keep it on a lead in “specific featured parks” and [somewhat conradictorily] dogs will be excluded from “specific featured parks”.
- Dogs will be banned from “all marked sports pitches and playgrounds”.
- Dogs will be prohibited from specific beaches from 1st May – 30th September each year [ they already are prohibited from Penarth’s foreshore in that period]
The Vale Council says that the Public Spaces Protection Orders would enable the law-abiding majority of people to enjoy these areas.The council says ” Although there have been several educational interventions to tackle people who allow their dogs to foul public spaces and do not pick up after them, there continue to be issues in the Vale of Glamorgan with irresponsible dog ownership, specifically where dog faeces is not being removed. The Council is aware that the majority of dog owners are responsible and control their dogs in public spaces; however there is still a minority of people who do not take full responsibility for their animals and ignore the Council’s byelaws. Consequently a significant number of complaints are continuing to be received by the Council in relation to dog fouling.”
The Vale Council points out that “Dog fouling is unsightly and unpleasant and in turn can lead to serious illness in humans, such as Toxocariasis. This is a roundworm parasite that lives in the digestive system of dogs. The worms produce eggs which are released in the faeces of infected dogs and contaminate soil. Once the eggs get into soil they can survive for months. Humans can become infected when they come into contact with
contaminated soil. Sports players and children are most at risk of coming into contact
with contaminated soil.”
- 93% of the council’s parks staff said in a survey that there is an issue with people not removing dog faeces
- 81% of the parks staff said the problem contoinues all the year around and said that the true extent of the problem with dog fouling is “under-reported” to the Council.
- The report also cites instances of play having to be stopped in the middle of sports matches when dog fouling is discovered on the pitches. The Vale Football Association says there has “been an increase with dog fouling on Council pitches and matches
have to be stopped whilst someone removes the waste”’.
The Keep Wales Tidy charity reports that dog faeces was found to be present on 13.7% of streets within Vale of Glamorgan during 2016/2017 – an increase on the previous year.
The council says its officers will work with internal departments and its Dog Warden Service to identify suitable areas for dog walkers and that the public will have an opportunity to comment on these areas during the consultation period.