Local people have complained about the carcass of a dead dog that washed up near the Foyle Port Marina at the weekend.
It is not clear how the carcass came to be in the water.
Some people who saw the carcass washed up said it had been “left to rot” and described the smell emanating from the dead dog as “absolutely disgusting”.
Martin McDaid, who walks along the quay several times a week, said he was worried the dead dog would attract rats.
“I couldn’t believe it - I was out for a walk with my two grand-daughters at the weekend when one of them spotted the dog.
“The poor thing had been left there to rot and the smell was absolutely disgusting.
“I walk up and down the quay regularly and I would see rats every now and then but I definitely think rats would be attracted to a dead dog.”
Mr. McDaid continued: “Somebody somewhere owned that wee dog and whether it drowned or whether it was dumped, the owner should take full responsibility.”
The Northern Ireland Environment Agency (N.I.E.A.), which is responsible for taking action to prevent or minimise the effects of polluting discharges made to waterways, have assessed that fallen animals do not pose a significant water pollution risk, however they may pose a risk to the health of humans or animals that come in contact with them.
In terms of who is responsible for the removal of fallen animals, the primary responsibility lies with the owner of the animal. In instances where it is not possible to identify the owner then the person on whose land the animal is on becomes responsible for its disposal.