Environment, Latest News | Posted: Monday, September 14th, 2020 at 9:07 am | return to news

Over 8,000 people respond to dogs in open spaces consultation

A total of 8,606 responses were received during Dorset Council's consultation which gathered views from residents, visitors, businesses and other organisations about a dog-related Public Spaces Protection Order (PSPO).

Huge response to consultation about dogs in open spaces. Image © CatchBox
Huge response to consultation about dogs in open spaces. Image © CatchBox

These views will be used to create a new Order that will give clarity and consistency for both dog-owners and non-owners. Councillors will make the final decision on the controls to be included in the new Order.

The survey originally ran for 12 weeks and this was extended for another three weeks to ensure people who wanted to respond with paper copies were able to.

The percentage breakdown of the responses was as follows:

83% from local residents

15% from visitors 

2% from other organisations.

Dog owners formed 64% of the respondents and 36% came from non-dog owners; 6.6% of the respondents  considered they had a disability.

Questions were asked about whether dogs should be kept on leads in certain areas, if dogs should be permitted into cemeteries graveyards, public gardens and sports pitches.

There were also questions about how people felt about restrictions on specific beaches across Dorset. These were about dogs on leads, whether the start and end dates of the restrictions should be harmonised across Dorset and whether there should be a dog exercise area.

Cllr Jill Haynes, Dorset Council portfolio holder for Customer and Community  Services said, “We have had an excellent response rate for this consultation. And it gave us a wealth of information to base the new PSPO. Thank you to everyone who took part.

“The full report and recommendations will be discussed at Place and Resources Overview Committee on 21 September and then to Cabinet on 6 October.”

To view the complete report, visit www.dorsetcouncil.gov.uk/dogs-pspo

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