BRACKNELL Forest residents and keen walkers are being reminded they can report dog poo hotspots on an interactive map.

Environmental health officers are keen to know of ‘troublesome areas’ where pet mess is a problem for locals.

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The Public Protection Partnership (PPP), which takes care of environmental health issues in Bracknell Forest, Wokingham borough and West Berkshire, last week posted on social media to remind residents of their online tool for alerting officers to areas plagued by dog-poo.

Bracknell News:

By using an interactive map to pinpoint which places are problem areas, the PPP can take a number of actions to tackle the issue.

This includes:

  • Cleaning up the mess
  • Enforcement action
  • Awareness campaigns
  • Changes to facilities for dog owners
  • Anti-social behaviour prosecution if persistent offenders are identified

To use the map, follow the link here:

Residents can leave their contact details alongside their map entry if they wish to be contacted about the issue by a PPP officer.

A dog fouling page on the PPP’s website claims “It is every owner’s moral duty and legal responsibility to clean up after their dog.”

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It continues: “The disgust that dog mess causes to those who have stepped in it, sat by it or seen their local parks ruined by it is felt keenly enough by dog owners who walk there every day.

“he offence and anger fouling causes to the general public is so great that letters of complaint on the subject are received daily by MPs and councillors across the UK.

“While these complaints have sometimes resulted in more special bins being provided and awareness-raising projects being funded, they have also resulted in campaigns and policies that punish not only the guilty owners and their dogs but all dog owners.”

Councils have the power to issue fines of £50 to dog-fouling offenders. In certain circumstances, offenders can be taken to court where the maximum fine is £1,000 alongside a criminal record.

Dog mess is also a problem for the risk of toxocariasis that comes with it.

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Toxocariasis is a rare infection caused by roundworm parasites and humans can catch it from handling soil or sand contaminated with infected animal faeces, according to the NHS.

A toxocariasis infection can lead to coughs, high temperatures, headaches and stomach pains, as well as skin rashes and seizures in rare cases.

According to the PPP, five per cent of dogs expel toxocara worm eggs, which if deposited in soil, can lie dormant for up to three years.

As the eggs take more than two weeks to hatch and become active, if dog owners clear up their pet’s mess there are no immediate health risks to humans.