Harringay online

Harringay, Haringey - So Good they Spelt it Twice!

We had a meeting of the Friends of the Harringay Passage yesterday and we touched on the issue of dog poo (it came top as the top issue in the Ladder wide survey the FoHP recently carried out).

I saw a post a few weeks ago here on HoL about the fact that by April next year, micro-chipping of dogs will be mandatory.

It made me think that it would be good to also include DNA profiling of all dogs now that this technology is so easily accessible, and for this to be stored centrally and on a the micro-chip. Basically, we have an issue with dog poo, dog poo can be DNA tested to the animal producing it (and the feckless owner leaving it), indeed councils are trialing this now. If we could make fines representative of the actual cost of enforcement rather than a cost to the council then there would also be an incentive to councils to do more to rid our streets of this mess that we and our children have to wade through on a daily basis.

Thoughts?

Tags for Forum Posts: dog micro chipping, dog micro-chipping, dog microchipping, dog poo, passage

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Chipping is compulsory from April this year - but DNA sampling isn't.

Compulsory or not, I'm sure there are plenty of people that won't be rushing out to get their animals chipped. That alone will take time to enforce.

Keep Britain Tidy tried posters with a pair of eyes on them that glow in the dark. Apparently this resulted in a 60% reduction in poo - people didn't want to feel like they were being watched not picking up after their dogs.

Ant Elder has said something similar, he has tried a couple of 'eyes' stickers in parts of the Passage at the north of the Ladder. I will ask him if he things they have worked...

Its a great idea, and while it may be 'disproportionate' it wrks, but only if:

  • All dogs are chipped and DNA profiled
  • There is a central registry to refer to
  • There is regular checking and DNA testing of poo when found
  • There are regular and random spot checks of dogs to check they are microchipped
  • The costs of this are borne by those offending- ie dog owners who are not clearing up after their animals effectively. I believe the fines in the Barking trial are £150.

Not that I am obsessing about this too much but I heard something on PM (R4) last night. This link should work. Go about 20 mins in. They have commentary from the folks implementing the trial. Apparently the company helping with the trial have reduced dog mess in the (albeit) gated communities/ private housing schemes they have worked in by 95%. It costs Barking £2.3m/year to deal with dog poo apparently. Dogs will be banned from parks in barking if not chipped, part of the incentive to getting dogs chipped.  

And simply announcing the scheme will have acted as a nudge to the group of owners who are casual about picking up, that overlooking it might just cost them this time. The owners/walkers who don't give a fig are tougher, given the realistic level of day-to-day enforcement particularly in open spaces.

On how close to complete chipping coverage it will get, a useful historical marker is for takeup of the former dog licence. According to a House of Commons DEFRA committee document, it was only around 50% when it was abolished (except in Northern Ireland where it is reckoned to be 33%) in 1987. On chipping, I'd guess owners responsible enough to take their dog to a vet will comply, but once again there will be a tailing-off among those who don't.

Think you're right that it would only work with a national database. Though I think it would need to be funded by all dog owners. But that figure of £2.3m seems very high. B&Ds entire Street Cleansing and Enforcemention budget is only £5m or thereabouts.

I thought so too, but listen to the radio report. maybe he does not carve out other things and just gives a lump sum cost for a variety of things including dog poo.

Well I was sufficiently curious about the costs that I sent a request to Pooprints, the company running the pilot and this is what the MD said...very interesting stuff... I've said I would send him a link to this thread ...

Subject: Recent enquiry regarding PooPrints

Good evening,
Many thanks for your recent enquiry regarding our dog DNA registration service PooPrints.

 The cost of the once off DNA registration process will be in the region of £35 per dog. You are correct that the first 1000 registrations in the pilot in east London are being provided free of charge. The 3 month pilot provides us with a significant opportunity to trial the service in a contained area at city level, which has never been attempted before. Whilst the pilot is ambitious, it also allows us to work upon the business model for upscaling the service in the event the pilot is viewed as a success.

 The business model is unlikely to include a flat fee registration(although I may be proved wrong!), In my opinion it will more than likely take the form of a Social Impact Bond http://www.socialfinance.org.uk/services/social-impact-bonds/, whereby the service is introduced on a payment by results mechanism tied to achieving improvements in social outcomes i.e. cleaner/healthier communities, less complaints around dog fouling, increased perception of cleanliness and other pre-defined measurable outcomes. This model is specifically designed to de-risk a new service introduction of preventative type measures that help improve the lives of residents. Ultimately, if the service proves a failure the local authority commissioner has not lost out financially.

 So as you can see the question around what is the 'cost' of DNA registration at city level is more complex than it seems. However, to make it simple all it would take is one local authority to pass a by-law or a PSPO that requires compulsory DNA registration with a requirement that dog owners must pay for it themselves, and that would change everything. But I have my doubts whether politically that approach would be supported.

 Anyway time to get off my soapbox! I have attached a visual one pager for your information. It is the proposition overview for PooPrints in the context of a local authority. Any feedback you may care to provide would be greatly appreciated.

 Kindest regards,
Gary Downie
Managing Director
Streetkleen Bio Ltd

http://www.streetkleen.co.uk/

Aughton House | Aughton Way | Broughton | Chester | CH4 0QE |

T: 01244 536999 | M: 07532 318600 | E: gary@streetkleen.co.uk |

Well done, that is great.

I will drop this guy a line and ask him to keep us updated as to how the trial is going. Once complete it might be worth trying to lobby a little with the council to see what their feelings are and whether they are interested in trying to do something.

I know we will not change things rapidly, but you never know, in a year or two's time we may see things begin to change...

Good stuff - is the visual any good and if so, can you please post it?

This is my No1 pet peeve (rubbish pun not intended).

It's disgusting - walking in snow or in the dark is positively hazardous. Say if your child fell i....doesn't even bear thinking about.

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