‘Responsible dog owners penalised’

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RESPONSIBLE dog owners feel they will be penalised if new rules are given the go-ahead.

Orders could ban animals from sports pitches and playgrounds and clamp down on owners who fail to clean up after their pets.

A consultation process has now started and a key feature of that will be to establish where owners should be allowed to exercise their dogs.

The process is due to run until November 4.

Questionnaires are available online, in council offices and libraries.

Posters will advertise the main proposals and letters will be sent to groups and organisations interested in dogs.

Ann Rutherford said while she accepts the fact that dog fouling is an issue she didn’t agree with the orders. “I have got big dogs and they need the exercise like chasing a ball and things like that. I am sure that the majority are having to pay for the minority. And I am sure there are laws and they should be made to clean up after their dog.

“A responsible dog owner would never think of taking their dog on a play area and a cemetery.”

Pat Oates said an area in Wellholme Park should be designated purely for dogs. “For example where we have the gala and responsible dog owners will pick up after them,” she said.

Lower Valley’s safer cleaner greener team’s area manager, Philip Schofield, said only last week a fixed penalty notice for £50 was issued in Lane Head Recreation Ground, Brighouse.

“The dog orders are still in the consultation stage so nothing has been decided. But I will certainly be against any areas in any of my parks being used for dogs to foul. I will not have that in any of our parks.

“Most of the modern parks have fences and we are trying to upgrade most of them and fencing is part of that upgrade,” he said.

“Dog fouling is something we are aware of and something we take very seriously. My staff do attend the parks at various times of the day we can be there at 6am and 7pm and 8pm when people have come home.”

Councillor Colin Stout (Ind, Brighouse) said: “It is not just dog fouling it is about ownership of dangerous dogs. It is the breed of dog and control of the owner and we do see this and it is very upsetting when you see dogs intimidating neighbours.”