Dog owners can now risk getting a £1000 fine if they walk their dogs on a lead that is longer than one metre. The strict new rule will now come into force in some parts of the UK from April 2022. Dog owners will no longer be able to use any leads that is longer than one metre when walking their dogs near roads or cycle paths.
From April 1st 2022 dog walkers in Teignbridge Devon could easily be fined for using dog leads longer than one metre anywhere near close to cycle paths or roads. The penalty will be for breaching the rule an the result will be on the spot fine of £100 which can easily rise to £1000 if prosecuted. The new rule has come part of the new public space protection order (PSPO) for dogs agreed by councillors to half the current two metre rule, and other local authorities may now follow suit.
Councillor Alistair Dewhirst said: “I think it has worked well so far and we want it to continue. It’s made a big difference in our district and i know it is something that fills all our inboxes, the issue of dog fouling in our communities.” Councillor John Nutley praised environmental wardens enforcing the rules and said they have “made a massive impact”. Officials hope it will “reduce irresponsible dog ownership and make the area cleaner and greener”.
Teignbridge District Council officers will now put more signs in key locations informing the public of the new rules.
Across the UK, dog owners must keep their dogs on a short, fixed length leads, which are two metres or less, in “some circumstances” under the Countryside and Rights of Way Act 2000. Many councils have now decided to reduce this to 1.5 metres. If you are unsure what the lead length is in your local area contact your local council.
The new rule will only apply to highways and cycle paths and it will not apply in any parks or beaches.