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Moffat counts the cost of dog fouling

Section:  Moffat  | Tags: , ,

THE COST of dog fouling in Moffat is mounting. Moffat Rugby Club recently splashed out £1000 of fundraising cash to install flood lights and CCTV at their home, to deter repeat dog fouling offenders.

Members say it’s not uncommon to have to clear the pitch of muck on a daily basis before training or matches can ago ahead and say mess often appears between 10 pm and 9 am overnight.

Meanwhile, Upper Annandale Youth FC say their last resort was to fence off their fields and lock the gates to keep irresponsible dog owners out.

But their move has been deemed controversial and even called a ‘land grab’. Now they are set to remove three out of four padlocks, to allow access, it was revealed at this week’s Moffat Community Council, where a heated discussion on all things dog poo broke out.

Members of the public raised concerns over the fenced off pitch, saying it excluded dog walkers and the community, despite being council owned land.

One member of the public said: “It’s an utter land grab, that’s the term for it. “I’ve walked down there for years and then one day, with no warning, no consultation, a fence has gone up and we’re locked out.”

Another member of the public called Moffat’s dog fouling plight ‘grossly exaggerated’ with a bystander saying: “The community warden has been called out before to investigate dog fouling in that area and they found nothing.”

But many there disagreed, saying dog fouling locally is a huge and ever growing issue. And concerns turned to safety, with a meeting goer adding: “I’m neutral. I’m not a dog walker or a footballer but to me the main concern here is the safety of children.

“It’s not safe for children to be exposed to dog mess.”

And his comments were met with a cheer. But a solution that appeals to the masses is yet to emerge.

Community council chairman Bob Opray said: “We’ve been working on an initiative involving stencils encouraging owners to pick up their dog’s mess.

“The plan is to spray paint these stencils, designed by local kids, in repeat offending areas to remind people to pick it up.”

The stencils will be introduced in the area shortly but will not be sprayed in the high street or conservation areas and will be done with washable paint, which lasts no more than six months as a trial.

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