Essex

Rochford council paints dog mess orange to 'shock' owners

Dog walking
Image caption The council's street team will spray dog mess bright orange for the next two weeks

Dog mess is being sprayed orange in a part of Essex to shock owners into cleaning up after their pets.

Rochford District Council will use spray paint for the next two weeks to highlight how much is not being picked up.

It is part of its campaign to tackle dog fouling and littering, which are problems in certain areas.

Keith Gordon, portfolio holder for environment, said dog mess could be "dangerous" due to the infection risk.

"We want to send the message that dog fouling is unacceptable," he added.

"Not only is it the most offensive litter on our streets but it could be dangerous.

"It can lead to an infection called toxocariasis if it enters the human system and young children are most at risk of this disease."

This week an environmental team officer started visiting nine areas where dog fouling is an issue, including Cherry Orchard Jubilee Country Park, Rochford Recreation Ground, Rochford Garden Way, North Street, Quays Lane and four town alleyways.

They will hand out bags to dog owners and spray any mess, which will be cleared as normal by street cleaners.

The chalk-based markings will be left until the campaign finishes in two weeks.

The punishment for dog walkers who are spotted by council wardens not picking up their pet's mess is a £75-on-the-spot fine or up to £1,000 if the case goes to court.

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