A North East veterinary group has launched a major campaign to encourage dog owners to pick up the poo in North Tyneside.
Westway Veterinary Group, which has a surgery in Whitley Bay, will distribute free poo bags to dog owners who call into its Claremont Road surgery throughout August as part of its campaign to encourage responsible dog ownership.
Additionally, the practice will also fund 10 bins along the seafront, from St Mary’s Lighthouse to Tynemouth.
Abbey Taylor is one of the vets from Westway Veterinary Group.
Both she and her colleagues want to play their part in keeping Whitley Bay clean for residents and visitors to the town.
Abbey said: “Most dog owners are caring, responsible people who respect the local environment and pick up after their pet, but there is a minority who give dog owners a bad name.
“As well as being unsightly, dog poo can be a danger to other pets and people, especially children, as it contains different bacteria and parasites.
“We are running our campaign in August, when the better weather brings more dog walkers to the seafront. They can come into the surgery, pick up some poo bags and advice on worming, vaccination and microchipping before heading off for a lovely walk along the seafront, where we have bins to place the bags.”
Dog fouling is a big concern across North Tyneside, and there has been a crackdown on owners who don’t pick up after their pets.
Over the last two years, 44 dog walkers have been issued with £50 fines by the council, four of which were later prosecuted after failing to pay.
North Tyneside Council has praised Westway’s campaign.
Jonathon Scott, a community protection officer at the council, said: “We are happy to have the support of Westway Vets as we continue to crack down on dog fouling across the borough.
“We have successfully prosecuted a number of offenders since the start of this year, and this is another positive step towards ensuring that everyone gets the message.”