Dog owners united over park plans

A picture taken at Blackpool & District Canine Society Championship Dog Show 2018
A picture taken at Blackpool & District Canine Society Championship Dog Show 2018
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A number of animal-lovers say ‘draconian’ plans by Blackpool Council to restrict dogs’ access to parks and green spaces victimise responsible owners.

The Blackpool Orders for Dog Control group has spoken about concerns that new Public Spaces Protection Order (PSPOs) would ‘penalise law abiding responsible owners from enjoying Blackpool with their dogs’.

The PSPOs proposed by Blackpool Council, would mean dog owners could no longer let their pets run free on Fishers Field, the Promenade middle walk, Cabin walkway, Squires Gate tram circle, or the grassy area on South Promenade.

Dogs would also be banned from marked out sports pitches. Dog owners would be limited to walking a total of four dogs, with a maximum of two let off lead at any time.

Additionally, non-microchipped dogs would not be allowed to exercise off lead in any public place.

People caught breaking the new rules couldreceive a fine of up to £100.

A spokesman for the group said: “We cannot understand why Blackpool Council feel it is necessary to even begin this consultation process when there are more urgent issues across the borough that are not tackled in the same way.

“If all proposals are passed there will be serious impacts on vulnerable groups such as the lonely, elderly, disabled and children, not to mention the animal welfare implications in preventing dogs exhibiting natural behaviours.”

A Blackpool Council spokesman said: “All members of the public are invited to voice their opinions within the consultation. No decisions have been made, so we are keen for as many people as possible to get involved in the consultation.”

The consultation will run until September 25. Visit www.blackpool.gov.uk/dogpspoconsultation.