copenhagen: crap laws?

Posted on March 17, 2006

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by sabine behrmann

Pets are good for your health – as long as you are not allergic to them. Pets that interact with humans like cats and dogs are better for you than e.g. fish.

Well, at least with dogs you can get some health benefit out of walking it, and walk it you should, at least twice a day.

In the early 1980s a walk through a street among many other dog owners could be quite difficult if you wanted to avoid stepping into their pets’ waste matter. At the end of that decade, however, things had changed considerably, partly due to regulations in several cities that no longer tolerated filthy pavements.

Although the new rules were difficult to inforce by the police, peer pressure from a large group of considerate dog owners grew more intense. Increasingly people brought small plastic bags on their daily tours with their four-legged friends. They collected the waste, discarded it into the next dustbin and taking a stroll did no longer mean that you had to negotiate a smelly minefield.

Nothing ever lasts, however, and we can now look forward to a new area of obstacle jumping.

According to rules and regulations concerning order and cleanliness on pavements, which were passed by the Danish parliament last year and only now have come to the attention of the wider public, cleaning up a dog’s waste is no longer the responsibility of its owner, but of the resident who has to keep the pavement clean.

The residents find this deeply unfair. And who can blame them? The amount of dog faeces on the pavements is increasing, and there have now been calls in favour of a revision of the law.

One of the problems the police are facing is that they would only be able to fine the real culprits when caught in the act, which would further strain their sparse resources.

More cameras might be an option – or houses on wheels if you want to avoid being pressured into assuming responsibilities for latrine services.

Untill a reasonable solution is found, however, watch out where you’re walking. Especially, when you’re walking a dog.

Posted in: at random, copenhagen