Owners feel full force of dog control orders

Three dog owners in Leeds are licking their wounds having been prosecuted for flouting dog control orders.

The man and two women failed to pay £75 fixed penalty notices handed out for allowing their pets to wander freely on the streets.

Under new rules introduced in January 2012, people must keep dogs on a lead at all times on all carriageways and adjacent footpaths and grass verges. The rules are intended to prevent dogs from running onto roads and curb nuisance or dangerous behaviour.

In all three cases, the animals were seen by council dog wardens roaming unsupervised before returning to their owners homes.

Nicola Wilmore of Throstle Lane, Middleton, Christopher Tiffany of Neville Grove, Osmondthorpe, and Amanda Mitchell of Landseer Drive, Bramley were all charged yesterday.

Wilmore was ordered to pay a £75 fine, plus £415.53 in costs and a £15 victim surcharge, Tiffany was given a £100 fine, plus £446.53 costs and a £15 victim surcharge and Mitchell was given a £75 fine and ordered to pay £386.53 in costs and a £15 victim surcharge.

Councillor Mark Dobson, executive member for the environment said:
“Sadly, the council has to deal with the aftermath of dogs who are left to stray unsupervised and meet an unfortunate end on our roads.

“The rules were tightened up to help avoid these situations and keep unruly dogs under control . It’s really disappointing that people still don’t seem to be getting the message that they need to take full responsibility for their animals.

“It’s not acceptable to let your dog wander on its own, especially near roads when you could be putting it and drivers at unnecessary risk. Hopefully these convictions will serve as a reminder of our commitment to responsible dog ownership.”

Notes to editors

Revised dog control orders came into effect on 9 January 2012.

Dog control orders mean that:

• dogs are banned from school grounds where the schools have requested the order;
• dogs are banned from remembrance and wildlife gardens;
• dogs must be on a lead at all times on all carriageways and adjacent footpaths and grass verges, as well as in cemeteries and crematoria;
• dogs must be put on a lead in any other places when directed by a council officer to do so if they consider the dog needs to be controlled.
• A person can walk a maximum of four dogs at any one time and they must be kept under control at all times. Professional dog walkers are allowed to walk up to six dogs.

Breaching dog control orders is a criminal offence and could result in a £75 fixed penalty charge.

Failure to pay could lead to court and a maximum fine of £1,000.

For media enquiries please contact:
Amanda Burns, Leeds City Council press office (0113) 395 1577
email: amanda.l.burns@leeds.gov.uk