A BLITZ on dog mess has been launched by Teignbridge Council.
Owners are being encouraged to pick up after their pets.
The Don’t Be A Dumper campaign was launched on Monday, and staff will use glow in the dark temporary spray paint to mark dog mess on the promenade areas.
Dog wardens will be out in force and will fine anyone who is seen not picking up. A clear-up will take place this Friday to remove what has been left behind.
Research shows that dog fouling is a major concern to the public, and a big problem is the increasing amounts of bagged dog faeces being left behind.
‘Dog mess is not only unsightly, but once the tide comes in, it also pollutes the sea that we swim in, and can sometimes be seen along the shoreline in dog bags. It can be harmful to marine life and takes many years to biodegrade in the ocean,’ stressed a council spokesman.
Cllr George Gribble, the Teignbridge executive member for recreation and leisure, added: ‘Dog fouling is a serious offence and Teignbridge is committed to maintaining clean beaches and open spaces that can be enjoyed all year round by locals and visitors alike.
‘Most dog owners behave responsibly and pick up and dispose of their dog’s mess in the bins provided by our beaches and seafronts.
‘Unfortunately, some people do not clear up after their dog, and this is who we are targeting.
‘There are a variety of health implications, which can affect people of all ages, as a result of coming into contact with dog faeces.
‘We want owners to help us make Teignbridge an even nicer and cleaner place by clearing up after their dogs, and not leaving it to someone else.
‘We will investigate complaints of dog fouling, patrol problem areas and prosecute offenders.’
The campaign is supported by Teignmouth and Dawlish town councils, local businesses, and other groups.
Teignmouth mayor Cllr Terry Falcão and the mayoress Judy Saunders said: ‘As responsible dog owners we want to ensure that we keep our town clean for everyone to enjoy.
‘This is not about targeting responsible dog owners – it is about raising awareness and reminding people that it only takes a second of your time to clean up after your dog to make a difference to the whole community.’
Tracy Scranage, the Teignmouth and Dawlish town centre development manager, declared: ‘Dog fouling cannot be allowed to blight our lovely town centres and seafronts.
‘We are all aware that a vast majority of our dog owners who walk their dogs on the seafront, and indeed are a vital part of the economy, pick up their pet’s mess, and are as irritated as we all are by the ignorant few who give all owners a bad name.’