DOG owners are set to face new restrictions including keeping their pets on leads across Barnsley as part of a radical local law change forced by rising cases of attacks.
Barnsley Council’s ruling cabinet members will discuss the development of a borough-wide public space protection order (PSPO) specifically designed for the control of dogs on Wednesday.
According to a report, the dog control order will allow the council to put specific conditions in place that dog owners must follow including the requirement of mandatory leads and more strict enforcement on dog fouling.
Any refusal to comply would result in an on-the-spot fine of £100 and non-payment could result in a £1,000 fine imposed by the courts.
Coun Jenny Platts, cabinet spokesperson, said: “We have a lot of responsible owners in Barnsley who do make sure their dogs are behaving and clean up after their dog.
“However, the council continues to receive complaints from residents about the behaviour of some dogs and it has a detrimental effect on people who live in the area.
“This allows us to look at how we tackle these issues in the future with our partners and the public, to shape something that is beneficial for the whole community and makes sure everyone is enjoying our open spaces.”
A PSPO - which can be used to regulate activities that have a detrimental impact on the local community - has been successful in Barnsley town centre and focuses on antisocial behaviour and drugs.
But so far nothing has been put in place to combat rising concerns with dangerous dogs in Barnsley - but the new measures put forward have been hailed as a step in the right direction.
Dodworth ward’s Coun Peter Fielding, whose one-year-old puppy toy poodle Freddie was killed by another dog in a ‘vicious’ random attack in June, has urged owners of potentially aggressive dogs to keep them under control.
His wife, Linda, had been walking Freddie when a large black labrador mongrel ran ‘the length of a football pitch’ and began to attack the pup.
When Linda got in the way, the dog bit her hands.
“She finished up on the floor as the dog was on top of her, hanging onto Freddie,” he said. “Nothing has been done to stop this from happening again with any certainty.
“It’s an issue a lot of people have voiced their opinions on, that dogs should be on leads in certain places, and I have to agree.
“The PSPO and fining owners who fail to control their dogs is the way forward as it offers some sort of protection.”
If approved by cabinet on Wednesday, the council will consult with the public and key stakeholders about their views on the topic which will then help to craft a draft order to be delivered back to cabinet for further review.
The report, compiled by Safer Neighbourhood Service manager Mark Giles, added: “The policing of any orders across the borough requires resource and there are currently limited resources available to deal with these additional breaches.
“It’s proposed that this type of enforcement may be dealt with on behalf of the council by a commissioned contractor in order to allow us to deal with subsequent higher-level enforcement action required should any initial fixed penalty notice remain unpaid.
“It’s important to note the final conditions will be developed based on the results of the public consultation, statistical data and discussions with key stakeholders including the police.”
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New rules set to be passed for dog owners
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