An introduction to the new Dog Fouling Order
On the 28 July 1998 the Horsham District Council Dog Fouling Order 1998 came into effect.
So what do we have to do?
If your dog fouls, you must clean up afterwards.
Where does the law apply?
The law applies almost everywhere once you are outside your own garden. It covers parks, footpaths, open spaces, verges, alleyways, playing fields and so on.
How do we know? There are not always signs up?
There are now many signs up as the law applies virtually everywhere on private land (except your own garden) as well as all public land. If you want to know the details of where the law applies contact firstname.lastname@example.org for a copy of the Order, or see below.
What happens if I don't clean up after my dog?
We have fixed penalty on-the-spot notices of £50, but the maximum fine is £1,000. There are enforcement officers patrolling the District from time to time to carry out the enforcement of the law. We are also relying on other residents to let us know if someone doesn't clean up after their dog. If you see someone, make a note of the time, place and description of dog and owner - and report them. If you have their address, that's even better.
What if there are no dog bins?
Then carry the dog mess either to the nearest dog bin, or take it home to put it in your bin.
But I don't have a bag to wrap it in?
You need to be prepared each time you take your dog out. Take a bag with you and use it to remove your dog's mess.
Are you expecting me to pick up dog mess? It's disgusting!
Yes, however, you must pick it up every time. It's a responsibility that comes with dog ownership.
Firstly, it’s the law. You can be fined.
Secondly, it’s a danger to health. Almost 100 children a year pick up serious infection because of dog mess. In some cases it has resulted in blindness. 1 in 50 of us are carriers of toxocariasis - the worm that if lodged behind the eye causes blindness.
Thirdly, it’s offensive. People are fed up with treading in it, and their children falling in it. It's unpleasant and dangerous.
Nobody else bothers do they?
They do actually. Most dog owners are responsible and clean up after their dogs. We already remove about 73 tonnes of dog mess a year from the dog bins.
If it's dangerous, I'm not going to pick it up!
It's not dangerous if you clean up correctly. Use a bag and see 'How to do it' below for guidance.
Are you going to provide anything?
The District is already well supplied with dog bins and it is not anticipated that many more will be installed apart from in areas of new development. It costs over £25,000 a year simply to empty the dog bins.
Is anyone exempt?
Yes. Blind people are not expected to clean up. If you think that you have a genuine reason why you can't clean up after your dog then inform the enforcement officer at the time. If you are in this position you should really train your dog to go at home before going out for a walk.
The following are not valid excuses for failing to clean up after your dog:
"It makes me feel sick",
"Why should I? Parks are for exercising",
"It's good fertiliser for the grass",
"I don't like the feel of it",
"I forgot to bring a bag (or poop-scoop) with me".
How to Clean up Dog Mess Properly
1. Put your hand inside a plastic bag
2. Place your covered hand over the dog waste and pick it up
3. Hold in position and pull the bag down over the dog mess. The bag is then inside out with the dog waste inside the bag
4. Tie the top of the bag in a twist
5. Place in a dog bin or your own dustbin at home
If you prefer you can wear a glove as well as using the plastic bag. Alternatively, use a small shovel, plastic scoop, or a piece of cardboard to scoop the dog waste before putting it in a bag.
If you wish to view a copy of the byelaw it can be seen in the reception at our offices; Park North, North Street, Horsham, West Sussex RH12 1RL.
If you do know anyone who doesn't clean up after their dog, please contact us at the above address, speak to us in confidence on (01403) 733144, or email: email@example.com
The Dogs (Fouling Of Land) Act 1996
The Horsham district council dogs (fouling of land) designation order 1998 HORSHAM DISTRICT COUNCIL (in this Order called "the Council") hereby makes the following Order:
The land described in the Schedule below and shown edged black on the map attached to this Order, being land in the area of the Council which is land to which the Dogs (Fouling of Land) Act 1996 applies, is hereby designated for the purposes of that Act.
This Order may be cited as the Horsham District Council Dogs (Fouling of Land) Designation Order 1998 and shall come into force on the 28th day of July 1998. Schedule:
LAND DESIGNATED BY DESCRIPTION
All land which is open to the air (including covered land which is open to the air on at least one side) and to which the public are entitled or are permitted to have access, with or without payment, within the black lines on the map attached to this Order OTHER THAN:
land comprised in or running alongside a highway with a motor vehicle speed limit permanently greater than 40 miles per hour;
land used for agriculture or woodlands;
land which is predominantly marshland, moor or heath; and
common land to which the public is entitled or permitted to have access otherwise than by virtue of section 193(1) of the Law of Property Act 1925.
Dated 29 June 1998. The Common Seal of Horsham District Council was hereunto affixed in the presence of the Council Chief Executive/Director of Law and Economic Development/Chief Solicitor