Dog dirt fines increase

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Increased fines for dog owners who fail to pick up after their pets has been doubled by the Scottish Parliament from £40 to £80.

An overwhelming majority of responses to a Scottish Government consultation on responsible dog ownership said they would support the fixed penalty being raised resulting in the The Dog Fouling (Fixed Penalty) (Scotland) Order 2016 which takes effect on April 1, this year.

In the Scottish Borders not one person has been issued with a fine for failing to pick up after their dog since the council phased out SB wardens in 2013, previous fines remain unpaid and complaints about dog mess is a regular topic of discussion at community councils across the region.

Tackling unpaid penalties is also a considerationfor the Scottish Government.

Minister for Community Safety and Legal Affairs, Paul Wheelhouse, said: “Dog fouling is not only unpleasant, but also can pose potentially significant risks to health and we’re very clear that dog owners who do not clear up after their dogs are breaking the law.

“We believe the increased penalty will act as a greater deterrent for people who do not take responsibility for their pets and clean up after them.

“We have public opinion behind us in an effort to get tougher on dog fouling and to tackle an issue that affects all too many communities across the country.”