As a consequence of the COVID-19 lockdown in Europe, the German laboratory that processes the DNA samples from dog fouling was not available for some months.
With the lifting of restrictions however, the processing of samples has now resumed and the ‘dog patrols’ carried out by the Environmental Agency and by the Environment Department’s Environmental Protection and Research Unit (EPRU) are resuming.
Despite the reduction during lockdown, in the last year the Agency has carried out a total of 74 patrols for dog fouling and checking on dog licences and these patrols have collected around 200 samples and issued 24 fixed penalty notices.
Dog owners are reminded also that it is now a legal requirement to dilute dog urine with a suitable liquid and that penalties may be issued for failure to do so.
While the vast majority of dog owners are fully responsible and share the community’s civic pride, some are clearly not, and it is for this reason that these measures are necessary.