Stawell reminded to keep pets on leads and clean up after your pooch

Published on 16 June 2020

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Since the Coronavirus Pandemic restrictions started, more people than ever before are taking advantage of our wonderful parks and gardens as they spend more time at home. 

However, council has noticed an increase in people walking their dogs off-lead in on-lead areas and received an increase in complaints of people not cleaning up after their pets. 

There has been a lot more four-legged traffic particularly at North Park, Cato Park, and Central Park and an increase in complaints about these areas. 

Pet owners are reminded dogs must be on a lead in these areas and leavings must be removed - it is an offence to do otherwise.
Council provides free bags in dispensers at the parks for those owners caught short by an unexpected doggy deposit. 

There has not been an increase in complaints about dogs or their deposits in other parts of the shire. 

Northern Grampians Shire Council Mayor, Murray Emerson, encouraged pet owners to show common courtesy to other users of these spaces. 

“Our parks are very popular with residents as well as sporting organisations and no one wants to come across dog waste when out for a run or at training,” he said. 

“Similarly, while many dogs are well-behaved off-lead, not all are and it is for the safety of everyone that dogs remain on-lead unless in a designated off-lead area.” 

“I ask everyone in our community to take into consideration the experiences of other park users and make sure our facilities are safe and clean for everyone to use.” 

Dogs are allowed off-lead in Stawell at the Old Lake Oval in Sutherland Street and King George Park, in St Arnaud, all other public areas are strictly on-lead only. 

A fine of $330 applies for a dog that is not properly leashed in an on-lead area and walkers must carry a device suitable for the collection of any excrement from their dog and be able to produce it on demand by an Authorised Officer. Failure to do so will also attract a $330 fine. 

Any excrement from an animal that is not immediately collected and disposed of into a waste receptacle also attracts a $330 fine. 

New signs have been erected at North Park and Central Park to remind owners and walkers to keep their pets restrained. 

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