Four out of 10 Dubliners say they don’t scoop their dog’s poop

Survey finds 90% of people think owners should pick up their pet’s waste

A Dublin City Council sign on North Strand. Photograph: David Sleator.

A Dublin City Council sign on North Strand. Photograph: David Sleator.


Dublin is losing the battle against dog waste with almost 40 per cent of dog owners admitting to not cleaning up after their pets and one in 10 having never or rarely removed dog foul from the city streets.

A Millward Brown survey for Dublin City Council found nine out of 10 people thought dog owners should pick up their animal’s waste, with just one in 10 saying they shouldn’t have to.

Two-thirds of the 400 people surveyed said they thought there was a dog fouling problem in the city. Almost half of all those surveyed, and more than half of dog owners questioned, thought the problem was getting worse.

Despite this, dog owners remain reluctant to pick up their pet’s waste. Just over 60 per cent of dog owners surveyed claimed to always remove their dog’s faeces, 17 per cent said they usually did and 10 per cent said they sometimes did. However, 7 per cent admitted they never picked up after their dog and 3 per cent said they rarely did.

Pooper scooper bags

The council has tried several initiatives to combat dog fouling, including handing out 400,000 free “pooper scooper” bags. It hardened its efforts in 2007 by putting several million euro into funding what it called a “blitz team” to monitor “known dog-fouling areas” and use “covert means for identification and ultimate prosecution”.

However, surveys carried out in recent months found dog waste was seen as the worst litter problem on the city streets, ranked ahead of overflowing bins, cigarette butts and chewing gum.