Hundreds sign up to become Green Dog Walkers

Hundreds sign up to become Green Dog Walkers

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More than 450 dog owners have so far taken the pledge to become green dog walkers as part of Clare County Council’s Green Dog Walkers campaign.

Launched in July 2016, the initiative encourages dog owners to clean up after their animals and raises awareness of the potential negative impact of dog waste on the environment and public health.

Volunteers lead by example and wear a Green Dog Walkers hi-vis vest with “leave only paw prints” on the back. By wearing the vest, dog owners are showing they have ‘taken the pledge’ to always clean up after their dog, carry extra dog waste bags, be happy to be approached to ‘lend’ a dog waste bag to those without, and be a friendly reminder to other dog walkers to clean up after their dogs.

Members of the public can take the pledge to be a Green Dog Walker by signing the Green Dog Walkers Form (available on www.clarecoco.ie) and returning it to Environment Section, Clare County Council, New Road, Ennis, Co. Clare, after which they will receive a Green Dog Walker pack in the post.

The Green Dog Walker pack contains a complimentary Green Dog-Walkers high-vis vest, Green Dog-Walkers ‘doggie bone’ poop-bag dispenser with a roll of bags, information leaflet and dog pledge, where children can get their dogs to put a paw print on a postcard.

Photo: © Pat Flynn 2016

Etain McCooey, Administrative Officer, Environment section, Clare County Council, said, “The majority of people walking dogs in public spaces are conscientious about picking up dog litter, and can help get the message out to others by leading by example.”

“The Environment section is particularly interested in working with community groups, Tidy Towns committees and volunteers. Please contact us, to see how you can become involved,” added Ms. McCooey.

Clare County Council last year teamed up with the creators of internet animation series Sminky Shorts to launch the Green Dog Walkers initiative. Funded under the Department of Housing, Planning, Community and Local Government’s Anti Litter Awareness Grant Scheme, the 80-second animated short has so far racked up more than 55,000 views on Clare County Council’s Facebook page, www.facebook.com/clarecountycouncil.

For more information on how to become involved in the Green Dog Walkers please contact the Environment section on envawareness@clarecoco.ie or phone on (065) 6846281.

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Chief Reporter Pat Flynn has worked as a journalist for almost 30 years. His career began during the late 1980s when, like many aspiring radio presenters of the time, he worked for local pirate radio stations in Clare and Limerick. Pat joined Clare FM in 1990 where he worked as researcher initially and later presented several different programmes including the station's flagship current affairs programme. He was also the station's News Editor and Deputy Controller of Programmes. Despite leaving in 2003 to pursue a career as a freelance journalist, he continues to work with the station to this day. As well as being the Clare Herald’s Chief Reporter Pat is also freelance journalist and broadcaster, contributing to Ireland’s national newspapers and is a regular contributor to national broadcasters.

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