Plea to dog owners in Dungiven to clean up after their pets

Colr. Sean McGlinchey
Colr. Sean McGlinchey

Irresponsible pet owners in Dungiven who don’t clean up their dog’s mess, are putting children at risk of being blinded.

That’s the stark warning from a local parents’ association who issued a plea on social media about dog fouling.

St. Canice P.S. Dungiven Parents’ Association said some children had arrived at school with their shoes covered in dog mess. They warned of the dangers it posed to people, in particular children, contracting Toxocariasis, a rare parasitic infection spread through contact with dog faeces, which they said “can even lead to blindness”.

“Not only is this disgusting, but it is also very dangerous, especially for our younger children who are too young to know not to touch their shoes if they are covered in dog dirt,” the parents’ association stated. “For the safety of our/your children, please clean up after your dog.”

Sinn Fein Colr. Sean McGlinchey, a dog owner himself, urged fellow dog owners to pick up after their four-legged friends. “People need to wise up and realise the dangers associated with dog dirt, that children could be blinded,” said Colr. McGlinchey. “There are a lot of responsible dog owners in Dungiven, but unfortunately there are some who do not clean up their dog’s mess. This issue came up in Council recently and you can’t blame the dog warden or the council. I know along Curragh Road and Garvagh Road it’s an issue. I don’t understand people who leave dog dirt on the ground. They wouldn’t allow it in their own back yard. If anyone wants to give me the information privately, contact me and I’ll pass it on to council.”

Following the Parents’ Association’s social media post, some people asked if Council will install dog litter bins in Dungiven.

A Council spokesperson said they’ve no plans to install specific dog waste bins in Dungiven, but “will assess if additional general litter bins are required in the town.”