Dog owners reminded to clean up after their pets
Dog owners are reminded it’s an offence not to clean up after their pets while out walking.
The reminder comes as legislation making it compulsory to micro-chip dogs resumes its passage through the branches of Tynwald.
The Dogs (Amendment) Bill reached its second reading stage in the House of Keys this year.
It would lead to the current licensing system being scrapped in favour of a small micro-chip implant that can be traced.
The Bill’s progress was temporarily halted while consideration was given to Martyn Perkins MHK’s suggestion that a scheme be included to compel dog owners to have their pets DNA tested so dog mess could be traced back to them.
Local authorities enforce dog bye-laws and the Department of Environment, Food and Agriculture (DEFA) has received mixed views from them over their willingness to test dog mess.
Nonetheless, the proposal will be the subject of a full public consultation and the policy will be decided from there.
DEFA will, in the meantime, continue to progress the Dogs (Amendment) Bill and its clauses will be considered by the House of Keys on 23rd May.
Mr Perkins, who is DEFA Member for Environment, Safety and Health, said: ‘Introducing compulsory micro-chipping of dogs will lead to greater traceability of animals and, hopefully, more responsible ownership.
‘While we progress the legislation, we will continue to evaluate the merits of introducing DNA testing, bearing in mind that DNA testing is fairly new. We intend to monitor other jurisdictions where it has been introduced, to see how well it has worked.
‘It is timely to remind dog owners of their responsibility to clean up after their animals and ensure bags containing dog mess are properly disposed of,’ Mr Perkins said.
‘The Government is telling the world we are a special place to live, work and visit and, in admitting us to the world network of Biosphere Reserves, UNESCO has recognised the unique relationship between the Island’s people and their surroundings.
‘Dog mess is a blight on our landscape, leaves an unfavourable impression and is a source of considerable tension.
‘We would again appeal to owners to obey the law and clean up after their dogs.’
Pending the introduction of micro-chipping, dog owners are also reminded their pets must be licenced – see here.