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Footballers cry foul over irresponsible dog owners

Teenage footballers are backing Fenland District Council's winter dog-fouling campaign, aimed at the few irresponsible dog owners who refuse to clean up after their pets.

dog fouling - football

Members of Chatteris Town Youth FC's under-15s team showed their support for the campaign by joining in a "poo-spraying" session at their pitch on the Sportsman field.

As with many other local football teams, they are forced to clear dog mess from their pitch before each match.

Charlie Smith, Edward Shepherd, Cameron Cooper and Jayce Lawless joined their manager, Kevin Smith, and Councillor Peter Murphy, FDC's Cabinet member responsible for the environment, for the event.

The council is planning similar action days in other towns and villages across Fenland, where volunteers are invited to join the team in spraying any piles of dog mess with bright, biodegradable paint. The aim is to highlight the extent of fouling and show offenders the detrimental effect they have on neighbourhoods.

Cllr Murphy said: "We did the same thing last year and it was very successful. The places we chose for the campaign all showed a significant drop in fouling, and the campaign got a lot of media coverage.

"Dog fouling is one of the problems most often raised by residents all over the district. Most dog owners do behave properly and pick up after their pets but it is the few who don't who we want to target."

As part of the campaign the council's Street Scene officers are stepping up their enforcement patrols. They have the power to issue on-the-spot fines of £75 to anyone they see failing to clean up after their dog.

They are asking members of the public for any information that would help them to catch the culprits. They are also urging all dog walkers to make sure they carry plenty of bags so they can "bag it and bin it".

Anyone who has any information about offenders should email the council at streetscene@fenland.gov.uk, call Street Scene on 01354 654321 or drop into their local Fenland @ your service shop. All information given is treated in the strictest confidence.