SECRETARY'S MESSAGE, MARCH 2013
Litter and dog fouling on the cycle path between Menstrie and Cambus
While it is recognised that the majority of dog owners are responsible and clean up after their pet, it is infuriating that the minority spoil the enjoyment of our new cycle path for the majority. Leaving dog poo in the path of people, buggies, wheelchairs and little feet and sometimes hands is wrong. It doesn't matter if it is one owner or many creating the problem, it is a form of anti-social behaviour and is just not acceptable. If your dog does its business, whether it be on the path or in the verge please bag it up and dispose of it responsibly, either in the bins provided or take it home and put it in your household bin, this is an acceptable way of disposing of it. DO NOT throw it into the verge or on a tree.
Bags are available free of charge from the Dumyat Centre.
Under the Dog Fouling (Scotland) Act 2003 and the Scottish Outdoor Access Code dog fouling (and not immediately picking up and disposing of the waste in a suitable bin) is an offence and carries an immediate fine of £40 or £1,000 if prosecuted. It is no defence to claim ignorance of your dog's actions. Owners are responsible for the actions of their dog even when children are walking them. Dog faeces are highly toxic and can cause a disease called Toxocara canis which can make people ill and cause blindness, especially in toddlers and young children. This is preventable if responsible owners clean up after their animals.
More information [PDF] - ed.
Litter is unsightly, dangerous, unhealthy and can persist in the environment for a long time. Litter can also trap, suffocate and poison wildlife. It affects local communities and the people who live there. The main source of litter is from pedestrians while out walking. There are many different types of litter but what they all have in common is that it is caused by people.
Litter takes a long time to biodegrade. For instance:
- apple, orange and banana skins - 2 years;
- crisp packet - 75 years;
- plastic bag - 450 years;
- plastic bottles - 450 years;
- tin cans - 500 years.
You may not see the result of this but future generations will.
It is our collective responsibility to take our litter home and put it in the bin. It is also parents' responsibility to educate their children to do the same. Children can only learn by example from adults.
We have a lovely cycle path but it is being spoiled by irresponsible people dropping litter.
Menstrie is a pleasant place to live and we are fortunate to have such good walking areas locally. Don't spoil the enjoyment of the countryside for our local residents and visitors. Be proud of your community and where you live.
SO PLEASE PICK UP YOUR LITTER AND PICK UP AFTER YOUR DOG.