Page last updated at 15:47 GMT, Tuesday, 16 February 2010

Lost dog owners' may be fined by Herefordshire Council

Dog owners whose pets are found wandering the streets alone could soon be charged by Herefordshire Council.

The council said it was changing its stray dog policy from March to ensure other taxpayers were not penalised for the action of irresponsible owners.

It said additional funding for rounding up the dogs and temporarily housing them would be spent on education to raise good pet ownership in the county.

It said people could avoid fines by putting identity collars on their pets.

Minority problem

Shane Hancock, the council's regulatory services manager said the majority of dog owners were responsible and kept their pets under control.

However, dogs that are not kept under control posed a risk to drivers, other people and animals, often fouled in public areas and risked being injured or killed, he added.

"It is only right that responsible dog owners and non dog owners do not disproportionately fund, through their taxes, a service that has to be provided because of the actions of a minority."

To report a stray or a lost dog contact Herefordshire Council.

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