Anger over dog mess ‘hot spots’

Dog wardens Lucy Reed (left) and Ellie Barlow. (130213M2)
Dog wardens Lucy Reed (left) and Ellie Barlow. (130213M2)

Homeowners who live near one of Ripon’s dog mess ‘hot spots’ have been crying foul over dog walkers who fail to pick up after their pets.

179 piles of dog waste were left dumped in a 100m stretch of footpath near the former Ripon Cathedral Choir School site on Whitcliffe Lane.

A grandfather who lives in the area said he fears for the safety of children walking through the city’s soiled paths.

The man, who wished to remain anonymous because of fears of reprisals from dog owners, said: “The crux of the matter is that’s it’s just irresponsible. When the fields are wet dog owners just think they can let their dogs do their mess on the footpaths.

“But there are loads of kids around and dog fouling can be fatal for children. It’s an awful thing and I always have to watch where I am walking.

And Harrogate Borough Council has said there is “no excuse” for dog owners leaving their pets’ waste behind on the city’s footpaths.

A spokesman for the council told the Gazette there is a dog waste bin near the site and owners can always bag the poo and take it home to dispose of.

The alarming 179 piles of poo were picked up during the council’s Flag and Bag event, where two dog wardens hunted out the city’s most offensive areas. The Whitcliffe Lane site was identified by the wardens as a dog dirt “hot spot”.

“We do a number of these Flag and Bag events to highlight the problem of people not picking up after their dogs. They really show how disgusting it is and how lazy dog walkers spoil it for everyone,” said the council spokesman.

“There are, however, some very good dog walkers who do pick up and act responsibly.”