Ards and North Down Borough Council is proactively encouraging dog owners to look after their pets responsibly
Ards and North Down Borough Council is trialling new signage along Ballyholme Promenade in Bangor to remind dog owners of the need to keep their pets on a lead in designated areas.
The signage will increase awareness and compliance of a dogs-on-lead order that has been in force since 2013.
The Council hopes that by reminding dog owners of the order and its importance, they will take greater responsibility for their pets.
This will help reduce the amount of dog fouling in the area, ensuring the promenade is a safe environment for all users.
Dog fouling has been a persistent problem in the area. By having dogs on a lead, owners are more likely to notice when their pets poop, and this encourages them to pick it up and dispose of it properly.
From 1 June, dog fouling fines will increase to £200 in Ards and North Down, reduced to £150 if paid within 14 days.
In addition, dogs running free on the path could result in injuries, particularly in areas where there is a drop to the beach. For the safety of all users, it is essential that dogs are kept on a lead on the path.
Dogs must be on a lead on the walkway but they can run freely on the beach area.
To avoid confusion, the path has been marked to show the areas where the order is in place, and signage will be erected to remind users that dogs must be on a lead.
Failure to keep a dog on a lead on this path and at other designated dog-on-lead areas can result in a fixed penalty fine of up to £80.
A Council spokesperson said: “The council urges all dog owners to take responsibility for their pets, keep them on a lead in designated areas, and pick up their poop to reduce the risk to health.
“This will help to keep Ballyholme Promenade and other areas in our Borough a safe and pleasant environment for everyone.”