We are a little worried that there is now a call from an MP from St. Albans to make this flicking of poo acceptable. The article can be read here: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-39254072.
While we applaud Anne for raising the issue and abhor dog poo bags hanging from trees as much as her (feel free to read our twitter feed), we feel mixed messages on dog fouling do not work as irresponsible dog owners will use them as excuses to get away with not doing anything "There were leaves on the cack" or maybe "I did flick it, but it must have rolled back". Not picking up after your dog is an offence, which is rarely enforced, as is littering. Are we going to say that if you do litter, flick it into a bush and it'll be OK? This could easily be a glass bottle which poses a health risk especially if smashed. What about drug taking, could "flick your used syringe needles under some leaves" also be acceptable? There are other people who also work in these bushes e.g. the local Ranger and his volunteers. It is also a health hazard for them. When tackling Himalayan balsam late on last summer, I narrowly missed brushcutting through 2 dog poo bags, but Thom Board from Keep Wales Tidy was not so lucky "fling it here, fling it there". We are acutely aware that the health risks associated with flung dog poo bags are worse than flicked poo, but you don't know when we would be doing this work, so why take the risk?
There has to be a responsibility from dog owners to pick up after your dog. It would only take one serious incident on our Local Nature Reserve and the 1000 volunteer hours we do each year across the 7 hectares of land we look after could stop. If you have got this far in this article, you may tell that we also disagree with the Forestry Commission's stance on this matter. Maybe they should flick some dog poo under their own desks and see how acceptable they find this.
We think a #bagitbinit approach has to be the only acceptable method of dealing with dog poo and policy and direction needs to be clear from the top down as it already is from our side.