THE amount of dog poo litter in York has shot up since lockdown started, according to a city rubbish collection firm. say the amount of dog dirt in and around the city has risen during lockdown three and they believe that it's due to fewer people being out and about meaning irresponsible dog owners believe they are less likely to get caught, so are more like to leave their dog's mess and run.

The firm, who provide dog poo litter removal for councils and private landowners, say they are alarmed by the increase and the implications this could have for public health and are calling on irresponsible owners to pick up after their dogs.

Spokesperson Mark Hall said: “It is disgusting to see that some dog owners are failing to pick up after their pets, when it’s an offence and the waste can lead to serious illnesses.

“There is more poo than people on the streets of York right now.”

With lockdown three in full-swing, current guidelines allow for people to walk their dog alone, with their households or support bubbles, or while exercising with one person from another household.

Mr Hall said: “Walking your dog is important for both pet and owner for exercise, especially while we are all house-bound during the lockdown.

“Unfortunately, thanks to the thoughtless behaviour by a few individuals, dog owners are once again getting a bad reputation due to a massive increase in dog mess on the streets.”

Thankfully, not all dog owners will leave poo on the pavement, as waste campaigners Keep Britain Tidy, who have run high profile campaigns such as the ‘dog poo fairy’, have found that 9 out of 10 dog owners do regularly clean up after their dog.

The 10% who do not clean up after their dog could be issued with a Fixed Penalty Notice of up to £100 for failing to pick up their dog’s waste, which could go up to £1,000 if the issue goes to court.

“There really is no excuse for this behaviour, especially as the waste can be put into any public bin,” says Mr Hall.

“It’s lockdown laziness, especially those guys who bag the mess, then don’t bin the bag. Get a grip.”

Not only is dog poo on the streets unsightly, but it could also be hazardous to public health.

In extreme circumstances, contact with dog poo can cause toxocariasis, an infection which can lead to dizziness, nausea, asthma, and in worse case scenarios, blindness, or seizures.