TWO dog waste bag dispensers have been installed to tackle fouling.

They have been installed in Darlington, in the layby next to the Baydale Beck pub, on Coniscliffe Road and at the Denes, at the junction of Surtees Street/Northcote Terrace and Willow Road.

The initiative was put forward by the new responsible dog ownership group, which brings together staff from Darlington Borough Council and people from dog walking and service businesses.

Councillor Jonathan Dulston, the council’s deputy leader, said: “Most dog owners are responsible and do clean up after their pets, but sadly there are some who don’t and the law states that being unaware a dog has fouled or not having a suitable bag is not a reasonable excuse.

“We hope the new dispensers will serve to remind dog owners of the necessity to pick up after their dogs and assist those who find they have no bags with them. The bags can be deposited in any of the public litter bins throughout the town."

“Anyone who fails to clear up after their dog can be issued with a Fixed Penalty Notice of up to £100. If the case goes to court this could cost the owner or person in charge of the animal up to £1,000.”

David Gray, director at Petpals Darlington and Yarm, added: “We know that the vast majority of dog owners are responsible and will have bags when they take their dog out, but sadly not all. This initiative will help to remind and support every dog owner that the expected course of action is pick up after your dog, and by supplying these stations, nobody can have any excuse for not doing so.”