Renfrewshire Council

Dog fouling

Your responsibilities as a dog owner, keeping your dog under control, how you can help.

Your responsibilities as a dog owner

It's an offence under the Dog Fouling (Scotland) Act 2003 for anyone in charge of a dog not to immediately clean up after the animal if it fouls in any public place or on private land without the owners consent.

Owners who don't pick up their dog's mess and dispose of it properly will face a fine of £80.

If your dog fouls in a public space, please dispose of its waste properly by putting it in a plastic bag and placing the bag in a bin.

It doesn't have to be a dog waste bin. Any outdoor public litter bin will do.

Keeping your dog under control

The Control of Dogs Order 1992 requires dog owners to ensure that their dog wears a collar with a tag when it's in a public place.

This allows authorised council officers to intervene early to change the behaviour of the dog and the owner before the dog becomes dangerous.

The Act focuses on 'out of control' dogs, which are defined as a dog:

  • that is not kept under effective control by the person who is in charge of it
  • whose behaviour gives rise to reasonable alarm, or apprehensiveness on the part of any individual.

The Act covers incidents which happen on all property or land, whether it's publicly or privately owned.

The owner of an 'out of control' dog can be issued with a Dog Control Notice (DCN) which requires them to take appropriate measures to ensure the dog is controlled.

These can include training; keeping the dog on a lead; muzzling the dog; or banning it from certain areas.

Owners who fail to comply with a DCN can incur a fine of up to £1,000. A court may also make an order to disqualify a person from owning or keeping a dog for a period of time.

In extreme cases, the court can order the dog to be put down.

How you can help

We understand that most dog owners are responsible, they clean up after their dogs and ensure that their dogs behaviour does not give cause for alarm to others.

Our job is to deal with the antisocial minority who do not.

You can help us. If you witness irresponsible dog owners who fail to pick up their dog's fouling or are not in control of their dogs, please tell the Renfrewshire Wardens, in confidence, providing as much detail as possible.