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Dogs on leads and picking up poo: We listened to your views and these are the rules

Published: Monday, 7 September, 2020

Dogs must still be kept on leads on canal towpaths and cycle tracks, after Stroud District Council asked residents and organisations for their views.

As part of a three-yearly review of the Public Spaces Protection Orders, Stroud District Council proposed to extend the use of the PSPOs for a further three years but to make one change by removing canal towpaths and designated cycle tracks from areas where dogs should be on a lead.

Responses to the consultation between May and July showed that most wanted to extend all four PSPOs for another three years, including keeping dogs on leads on canal towpaths and designated cycle tracks.

The four Public Spaces Protection Orders (PSPOs) require dog owners to:

  1. Pick up dog faeces.
  2. Put dogs on leads when directed to do so by an officer.
  3. Keep dogs out of areas signed as exclusion areas, e.g. children’s play areas.
  4. Keep dogs on leads in designated areas such as allotments, cemeteries, car parks, canal towpaths, designated cycle tracks and specified footpaths used to reach schools and colleges.

Of the more than 100 respondents to the consultation, almost all were in favour of keeping the first three orders as they are, while just over two thirds of respondents wanted the fourth order to remain as it is. Safety concerns and keeping fouling under control were cited by consultation respondents as reasons for opposing the amendment to the fourth order.

The council can issue a £75 fine or prosecute in court with a fine of up to £1,000 in cases where dog faeces is not picked up.

On Thursday evening Stroud District Council’s Environment Committee extended the PSPOs until October 2023.

Cllr Simon Pickering, Chair of the Environment Committee said:

“I want to thank all the members of the public and organisations who responded to this consultation. The requirement to keep dogs on a lead in designated areas revealed arguments for and against, particularly along the canal towpath and cycle tracks. As a cyclist myself I could see both sides of the argument. 

Committee members also had different views but I am pleased to report that the committee agreed to retain this requirement to keep dogs on a lead in these areas in line with the majority view.”

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