Paint messages being used as part of bid to tackle dog-fouling in Borders

Hawick and Hermitage councillor David Paterson with one of the dog-dirt stencils.
Hawick and Hermitage councillor David Paterson with one of the dog-dirt stencils.

Dog-dirt blackspots often leave people seeing red – but now they’ll be seeing yellow too.

Anti-dog-fouling messages are to be spray-painted on the region’s worst-affected pavements using stencils as part of Scottish Borders Council’s latest bid to tackle the problem.

Hawick and Hermitage councillor David Paterson, Scottish Borders Council's environmental services executive member, meets new dog fouling and littering enforcement officers Tony Garrick, left, and Paul Marenghi.

Hawick and Hermitage councillor David Paterson, Scottish Borders Council's environmental services executive member, meets new dog fouling and littering enforcement officers Tony Garrick, left, and Paul Marenghi.

The stencils, urging owners to clean up mess deposited by their pets, are the latest initiative in the authority’s ongoing responsible dog ownership strategy.

Activities already undertaken as part of the strategy including the making of an anti-dog-fouling video by Hawick High School pupils and new posters being put up.

Two enforcement officers, Tony Garrick and Paul Marenghi, have also been recruited as part of a 12-month pilot collaboration with Hampshire-based external contractor 3GS, and they have the power to issue £80 fines for dog-fouling and littering.

The authority’s executive member for environmental services, Hawick and Hermitage councillor David Paterson, said: “The stencils have a very clear, straightforward message – clean it up.

“We hope the message will remind people of their responsibilities as dog-owners who should be picking up after their pet whether in the countryside, in town or beside a sports pitch.

“The stencils will not be spray-painted everywhere, only in areas which we know are blackspots for dog-fouling.

“They use chalk-based paint which means they are temporary.

“We are taking the issue of dog-fouling seriously, as can be seen with this and our various other educational activities related to the responsible dog ownership strategy.

“For those not willing to listen, there is now the real threat of an £80 fine through the appointment of enforcement officers as part of the year-long pilot.

“I have met both officers, who are highly trained and committed to working with the council.

“They will only issue fixed-penalty notices to those who do not observe the law.”

More information is available at www.scotborders.gov.uk/dogfouling