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Just two dog fouling fines handed out by Dublin City Council in 2020

One fine in 2020 was paid, according to Dublin City Council, with a prosecution initiated for the second fine.

JUST TWO FINES related to dog fouling in Dublin were issued by the City Council in 2020 despite a significant rise in complaints last year. 

One fine in 2020 was paid, according to Dublin City Council, with a prosecution initiated for the second fine. 

Under Section 22 of The Litter Pollution Act it is an offence not to clean up after your dog has fouled. This can result in an on-the-spot fine of €150 or a summary conviction to a fine up to €4,000.

Despite a lack of enforcement due to Covid-19 restrictions, the Council has recorded a 27% increase in complaints regarding the issue of dog fouling in public parks and open spaces across the city over the last 12 months.

  • Our colleagues at Noteworthy want to find out what is being done to tackle dog faeces littering our streets and parks. Support this project here.

A spokesperson for the Council said: “Dublin City Litter Wardens can issue fines for dog fouling and patrol the city every day and are constantly looking out for people walking dogs. 

“Due to lockdown, more and more people are out walking dogs and Litter Wardens engage with people to ask them if they have means of cleaning up after their dog. 

“If they don’t have a means of disposal, they give them free compostable bags and advise them to clean up and to “Bag it and Bin it”.  The litter warden will decide what is the appropriate action to take and that could be awareness. 

“Once engagement takes place that can win the hearts and minds of people.  However, if enforcement action is necessary then that will be the case.”

Earlier this week the Council launched the second part of a campaign to encourage dog owners and dog walkers to act responsibly and to pick up after their dog as the dog fouling problem continues to grow in Dublin. 

As part of the campaign, the Council said it will install audio devices in so-called blackspots across the city to encourage dog owners to clean up after their dogs.

A suite of outdoor and digital adverts will run in tandem for the two-week period.

City Councillors have set up a working group to examine the ongoing issue of dog fouling across Dublin. 

Dublin Lord Mayor Hazel Chu said this week it was now a “major issue” in Dublin, particularly for people who are more at risk of coming into contact with dog waste, including wheelchair users, visually impaired people, babies and toddlers.

“Whether you own a dog or not, dog poo in our public spaces affects the whole community. I am appealing to all dog owners in the city to act responsibly and pick up after their dog as dog waste affects everyone,” said Chu.

Dog faeces contain bacteria and worms which can be particularly harmful to young children. It is picked up on the wheels of bikes and buggies and is brought into homes across the country.

Toxocariasis is an infection caused by roundworm parasites. It is spread from animals to humans via infected faeces. Young children are particularly at risk of getting toxocariasis because their play habits make them more likely to come into contact with contaminated soil.

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Cónal Thomas/Adam Daly
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