Dog walkers in Hackney, London, have been expressing their anger at the council’s proposed Dog Control Public Spaces Protection Order that will last until March 2027.
If passed, Hackney Councily’s protection order will introduce regulations, making it an offence for dog walkers to walk more than four dogs at a time and to not pick up dog’s faeces.
The council will also be able to prevent dogs from entering public spaces, exercise without leads, and will provide officers with the power to enforce leads on dogs.
Several public parks and green spaces would have to comply with the dog restriction rules. This would mean that dogs would require leads in specific parks or, in some cases, be unable to enter.
If approved, Abney Park and Hackney Marshes will become on-lead-only zones.
Failure to comply with the PSPO will lead to a £100 fixed penalty notice, rising to £1,000 if taken to court.
Doug Thackway of Doug’s Dogs, told East London Lines: “We will have to put our prices up to cover having four dogs maximum, and that means more people won’t be able to afford dog walkers. More owners struggling to walk their dogs will lead to more dangerous dogs. It’s a badly considered proposal.
“The majority of professional dog walkers in the borough are aware of their responsibility to the public and don’t want to cause a problem.”
Jana Cz, a dog walker at Hound Crew, told the website: “During the week, its just dog walkers on the marshes and its really nice and peaceful. It would be a massive shame to lose it. All the dog walkers using Hackney marshes are extremely proficient.”
A public consultation and survey on the proposed rules will be open until 15 December.