We have received a number of inquiries over the last couple of weeks about the issue of dogs on leads in Lightwoods Park, so I thought I would clarify the position of the Council.
The control of dogs in public places is covered by The Dogs on Leads by Direction (Sandwell) Order 2007. That doesn’t say that it is an offence not to keep a dog on a lead, but that it is an offence not to comply with a direction given to them by an authorised officer to keep the dog on a lead.
The fact is that owners of dogs which are under control and are not causing a nuisance are unlikely to be requested to put them on a lead. But where dogs are considered to be a nuisance or a danger, the owners will have to comply with a request to keep them on a lead.
There have been two incidents in the last week which have caused major concern in the park. One in which a dog was released to run around in the Shakespeare Gardens, whilst the gardeners were working there, and another in which two large dogs were set free to charge amongst the bedding plants in the flower beds.
So the message to dog owners is clear. If your dog acts irresponsibly, and is not under control, failure to put them on a lead can lead to a fixed penalty charge!