Many people in our village live here because of the fantastic countryside walks on the footpaths and bridleways we have here for us all to enjoy; through the village itself, across the Park, down to the river or the quarry, along the public footpaths and the canal towpath, across to Northbrook. Many villagers enjoy these walks with their dogs and the vast majority of these dog owners take bags with them and conscientiously pick up what their dogs inevitably deposit when they are out walking. It is extremely disappointing then to find that there are dog owners in the village who let their pets down.
It is an offence to allow a dog in your charge to foul a public area (£50 fixed penalty notice). Yet it seems some people still think the rules do not apply to them. The unpleasant residue of dog excrement is all too evident around the village and dog fouling is regular occurrence, astonishingly enough, even within yards of the dog bins! The few irresponsible dog owners seem set on giving dogs and all dog owners a bad name, spoiling things for everyone else. It isn’t asking much. Just bag it and bin it.
The dog excrement left by the small percentage of irresponsible dog owners is not just disgusting and unpleasant, it remains a health hazard. Infections of Toxocara Canis from coming into contact with dog faeces can still blind a child, and these infections are not great for adults either. It is for this reason that villagers are not permitted to exercise dogs on the sports field. Dogs are prohibited from this area so that children and young people, and older people, can play sports and exercise here safely and so that everyone can enjoy picnics here on the grass in the summer without fear of infection. Dog owners please remember that dogs are only permitted on the designated walk way between the two sports field gates. Here again we acknowledge that, most dog owners behave responsibly and obey the rule, but a few seem intent on spoiling things for everyone.
It has been suggested to the Parish Council that additional dog bins for ‘hot spots’ in the village could help to prompt everyone to do the right thing by their dogs. We therefore propose to purchase and install additional dog bins to be placed by the two main entrances to the Park from the village. Once and for all, let us all try to make sure man’s best friend is everyone’s best friend in the village.