Aberdeenshire Council’s latest initiative to combat dog owners who don’t clean up after their pets has had a mixed reaction from local residents.
Signs, which immediately catch the eye with the word ‘WANTED’ printed in large red lettering, state “Information leading to identification of the person who is allowing a dog to foul this area and does not clean it up” before promising a reward of ‘clean feet’ to anyone who can help collar the culprits.
The signs have been spotted in Muchalls and in the Hillside area of Portlethen, with some saying that they are a “great idea”, while others have dismissed the signs as ineffective and a waste of money.
After posting an image of one of the new signs on our Facebook page, we were inundated with comments from locals, with many enjoying the humour of the signs and supporting the campaign, while others doubted the effectiveness of the scheme.
One contributor highlighted her approval of the fact that the phone number listed on the sign is an 0800 number, meaning it will be free to call.
Gail Marshall said: “A change of sign may get attention, I stopped to read it. I am a dog owner and always pick up, as I see plenty of poo between Muchalls and Newtonhill on the coastal walk and both villages streets. Most deposits I think are when it is dark.”
Charell Doona Denise Leys commented: “We need a sign like that in Laurencekirk, it’s disgusting that people can just let the dogs poo and not pick it up. A couple of times I’ve been walking and see it but too far away to say something.”
Dawn Tommo added: “We need this in Luthermuir! Horrendous.”
John Tavendale also thought the signs were a good idea: “As a dog walker who always picks up behind his dog I fully support it. There is no excuse other than laziness or lack of preparation.”
Jimmy Johnstone said: “Bervie has dog mess all over. The path to Gourdon is covered in it. Give me some signs to put up.”
Phil Coutts: “I agree with the Sign and would be happy to report these people, I walk my dogs up Bervie Braes and most of the time the path is a mine field with dog poo because of lazy dog owners.
Jean Campbell said: “Oh my! The council showing some humour!”
Sandra Davis suggested that the signs may work in conjunction better alongside some extra bins. She said: “I pick up my dog’s poop. Great idea but for every one of these signs put a bin for the poop to go in.”
While George Burr Snr had a slightly more cynical view: “Are these new signs detachable? If so bang the culprit on the head with them ... that’s the only way it may work.”
Gayna Linda Sandeman said: “I have never, ever heard of one person being fined and, until we do, I don’t think the problem will ever decrease.
“I personally do not feel these types of initiatives work, I think they encourage vigilantism and ill feeling between people. I have always cleaned up after my dog regardless of where it does it’s business. Why? Because I own a dog and that is therefore part and parcel of ownership.”
Bethany Ewen said: “Gross habit and gross sign!”
Claire Turnbull echoed the sentiment, added: “Excellent waste of money by the council. Would it not be better just paying a warden to catch them instead?”
We also asked you if you would report a dog owner if you witnessed them failing to pick up after their dog.
Janice Nicol said: “Being a responsible dog owner if I saw someone start to walk away from their dog doing its business I would make them aware I had seen it and then offer them a bag. This is something that really angers me.”
What do you think of the signs?
And would you make use of the phone number and report an offender? Get in touch with us via email at firstname.lastname@example.org