Council deserves credit for listening to dog lovers
WHEN Camden first published their dog control proposals on February 15 there was a quick reaction from the dog owners in Camden as they considered these proposals to be too restrictive. As a result, our shop organised a petition which attracted over 730
WHEN Camden first published their dog control proposals on February 15 there was a quick reaction from the dog owners in Camden as they considered these proposals to be too restrictive. As a result, our shop organised a petition which attracted over 730 signatures asking Camden to look at these proposals again.
I was invited to meet Cllr Mike Greene, Chair of the Environment Sub Group, along with a representative from the Kennel Club and a resident from the south of the borough, to discuss in detail where we considered the proposals to be detrimental to the welfare of the dogs and their owners.
In the meantime, because of the outcry against these proposals, Camden extended the consultation period for a further four weeks and also produced an on-line questionnaire which received 576 responses, plus 96 written responses, 700 email responses, 11 petitions with 1,400 signatures, and many phone calls taken by street environment services, parks and open spaces and the Heath police.
Face to face discussions were also held with park users at events on Hampstead Heath. I was then invited by Cllr Greene to send a deputation to the executive environment sub-group on May 17.
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All the restrictions which had been proposed were discussed and the residents' views were taken into consideration. This has resulted in sensible dog control orders being implemented.
There will be no restrictions for dogs off lead, except for a few places such as children's play areas, food areas, and certain other areas nominated by Camden. It is a requirement that all dog mess is picked up wherever it is in the borough. Dogs will be able to go into the shrubbery but not in planted areas. Full details will be on the council's website.
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Any infringement of the council's dog control order will result in being served with a fixed penalty order, but only after not complying with a verbal request from an authorised officer. Education and common sense being the first line of action.
At a time when there is so much criticism about local government, I would like to compliment Camden, and especially Cllr Mike Greene and Richard Bradbury, Head of Environment Services, on the way they have listened to all interested parties in this consultation and taken on board all that they have heard, which had enabled the council to bring in a sensible dog control order.
There are one or two areas of the proposals for which no decisions have yet been taken, namely the number of dogs walked and restrictions on dogs on the estates, and further discussion and advice are being taken on these matters.
Primrose Hill Pets
Regent's Park Road, NW1