MOVES are being made to target dog owners who do not clear up after their pets.
Owners not picking up their dog’s mess is an ongoing problem across the district with residents regularly complaining more needs to be done to enforce penalties in a bid to deter the culprits.
The churchyard at Holy Trinity is littered with dog mess despite signs reminding owners to keep their dog on the lead and to pick up any mess.
Town councillors are working to introduce a by-law and hope to work with town hosts and traffic wardens to find a way to issue penalty fines when people are caught not picking up after their dogs.
Owners already face a penalty of £80 if they do not pick up the mess and can be taken to court and fined up to £1,000 for refusing to pay the penalty charge – but the problem has been catching them.
Stratford mayor Juliet Short said: “The town council are concerned about dog fouling in the town but mostly in the Holy Trinity graveyard where there has over a year been an increasing amount.
“Our cemetery staff have responsibilities to keep the graveyard clean and the grass strewn – this causes problems as dog poo gets rocketed all over the place when hit by the blades.
“The dog mess also goes on the mowers rollers and then has to be cleaned by our staff. All of these problems are a major health and safety issue for the council.
“Over Christmas I watched a lady open the back door of her car and out came three dogs – not on leads – which ran straight into the graveyard. She did not attempt to go with them and after a few minutes she called them back, they got into the car and off they went.”