Dog mess to be spray-painted to highlight the problem

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Dog mess is to be spray-painted in an effort to shock irresponsible dog owners into cleaning up after their pets at a popular nature reserve.

Officers and volunteers from the Wildlife Trust will be out using brightly coloured spray-paint to highlight any of the offending waste they find at Irthlingborough Lakes and Meadows nature reserve.

The move comes after a similar campaign at a Wildlife Trust nature reserve in Bedfordshire helped to reduce the amount of abandoned dog mess at the site by 90 per cent.

They will also be talking to visitors and putting up posters to inform people about the campaign, encouraging all dog owners to “bag it and bin it”.

It is hoped the scheme will highlight the scale of dog fouling at the popular site for dog walking and embarrass the owners who don’t already do so into clearing up after their pets.

Louise Tuffin, Nene Valley education and community manager at the Wildlife Trust, said: “Dog fouling is one of the biggest complaints we receive from visitors.

“It’s extremely unpleasant when it is left lying around and has potential health risks.

“This spray-paint will make this mess really obvious so the owners get the message that it is disgusting wherever it is left, and that we think they should be picking it up.”