Councillor Davie Paterson has welcomed the news that the fine for dog owners who fail to pick up after their pets has been doubled.
The fixed penalty for dog fouling is being increased from £40 to £80 to bring it into line with the fine for littering.
Mr Paterson, Scottish Borders Council’s environmental portfolio holder, told the Hawick News: “I’m pleased that it has been doubled, and I have actually written to the Minister asking that it be increased even more.
“I’m glad that the Scottish Government has finally listened and hopefully this [the increased fine] will work in well with the new dog fouling strategy that the council is bringing out.”
The change comes after the majority of respondents to a Scottish Government consultation on responsible dog ownership said they would support the fixed penalty being raised. The Dog Fouling (Fixed Penalty) (Scotland) Order 2016 takes effect on April 1.
Hawick MSP Paul Wheelhouse, the Minister for Community Safety and Legal Affairs, said: “Dog fouling is not only unpleasant, but can also 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.”