ARGUS COMMENT: Higher dog mess fines a good move
Updated 12:17pm Thursday 3rd April 2014 in News
BLAENAU Gwent council is to introduce the biggest fines in the country for dog owners who fail to clean up after their pets.
In two weeks' time dog owners face being fined £125 - up from the current £75 fine.
A welcome move and surely to be popular among all other users of parks, play areas and town centre pavements.
Because let's face it there is nothing more disgusting on our streets than dog mess which irresponsible dog owners have just left behind.
And, as we have long argued there seems to be no way of getting the message across, although it is glaringly simple, that if you have a dog you have to pick up after it. That's it. It is not hard to understand or even difficult to do.
Yet seems to be beyond the wit of so many.
Perhaps the threat of a tough fine regime is the way to go.
That said however, there are questions.
Of the people fined, and there have been 4,000 since Blaenau Gwent introduced fines in September 2011, how many pay up?
Do we know if being caught actually changes their behaviour?
Ultimately though, the key question has to be, does the introduction of fines, or raising of existing fines actually lead to an increase in responsibility among dog owners?
In other words are the streets and parks any clearer of dog mess?
Because unless that is the outcome the number of fines, or amount paid does not matter one jot.
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