Worcester residents are being asked to back a campaign that aims to get tough on dog owners who don’t clean up after their pets.
City councillors are urging people to use the free PooWatch web app at www.poowatch.co.uk to report city streets and parks where they see dog mess that hasn’t been cleared up.
Information from the PooWatch reports will be used as evidence in an application to the Government to declare Public Space Protection Orders (PSPO) in the city’s dog mess hotspots.
A PSPO would give the Council powers to issues on-the-spot fines of up to £100 to irresponsible dog owners. Any that refuse to pay could face court action and a fine of up to £1,000.
PooWatch volunteer Esther Povey, Cllr Joy Squires and Cllr Alan Feeney with one of the stencils used to highlight a dog mess black spot
Councillor Joy Squires, Chair of the Council’s Environment Committee, said: “None of us want to see dog mess on our pavements, so I want to urge city residents to help us build up a picture of where Worcester’s poo black spots are. Once we have the evidence, we can make a strong case to the Government to get these extra powers and deal with irresponsible dog owners.”
Worcester residents can play their part by using the PooWatch web app at www.poowatch.co.uk. The app is designed to work on smart phones, tablets and desktop computers.
The web app was jointly developed by the Safer Worcester Partnership, the Duckworth Worcestershire Trust (DWT) and Worcester City Council with funding from West Mercia’s Police and Crime Commissioner.
It puts an interactive map at your fingertips, allowing you to find your nearest dog waste bin or report mess on a city pavement – and you’ll then get live information on the action taken to deal with it.
You can save the PooWatch web app to your home screen so you can use it whenever and wherever you need to.
Volunteers support the PooWatch campaign with the use of chalk spray marking, counting, and distinctive stencilled messages in areas where dog mess problems have been reported.
When a dog poo hot spot is identified, poo bag dispensers are put out to make it easier for people to clear up after their dogs.
Cllr Alan Feeney, Vice Chair of the Environment Committee, said: “The PooWatch app has been popular with Worcester residents for the last two years, but now we want people to use it more because the data on those hot spots can help us get more powers to keep our streets poo-free.”