Service information

We need your help to stop dog fouling

If you want to report a dog fouling incident please us the report dog fouling form.

We will treat any information you give us in the strictest confidence.

The Council cannot stop dog fouling without the active involvement of residents. We will do leaflets drops, patrolling, issue fines, caution letters and put up signs for instance, however, we need the involvement of local people, especially responsible dog owners, to re-educate dog owners who do not ‘pick up’.

The Dog Champions initiative gives local people the resources and skills to be able to tackle problems in their area. For more information on Dog Champions, please contact us.

Dog fouling and the law

  • Blackburn with Darwen Borough Councils Fouling of Land By Dogs Order came into force in 2008.
  • Under the order if a dog fouls on any land which has been designated as a no fouling area the person in charge of the dog must immediately clean up the waste.
  • If that person fails to clean up they have committed an offence and can be prosecuted.
  • It is not a reasonable excuse to say that you were unaware that your dog had fouled (whether by reason of not being in the vicinity or otherwise), or you do not have a suitable means of removing the waste.
  • Under the law no offence is committed if;
    • The owner or person on whose land the dog fouling has taken place has given consent for the dog waste to be left on the ground.
    • The person in charge of the dog is registered blind.

Dog fouling and health

Dog fouling is unpleasant and can have serious implications for health because it can transmit harmful diseases.

  • One of these is toxocariasis, a parasite, which although rare, can cause serious infections and even blindness in anyone who comes into contact with it.
  • Children and anyone playing sport are particularly at risk when playgrounds and playing fields are contaminated.
  • The parasite can only infect humans if swallowed. Once swallowed the infection can last between six and 24 months.
  • Other animals especially other dogs, can be infected.
  • Ingested dog faeces can cause gastroenteritis with symptoms of sickness and diarrhoea.
  • There is a risk of other types of infection whenever dog excrement comes into contact with grazes, scratches or open wounds.

Being a responsible dog owner

When taking your dog out:-

  • Always carry with you something with which you can pick up your dog's waste and clean up as soon as your dog has fouled.
  • Place this bagged dog waste in any litter bin or take it home with you


As a dog owner you are by law (Control of Dogs Order 1992) obliged to identify your dog by ensuring it wears a collar and tag at all times when on a highway or in a public place. This tag must carry details of your name and address.

As a dog owner you are by law (The Microchipping of Dogs (England) Regulations 2015) required to ensure that your dog is microchipped. Microchipping your pet is a permanent way of identifying it. Most vets offer a microchipping service although cost may vary.

Stray dogs

There are two council dog wardens who patrol Blackburn with Darwen. One of their roles is to patrol the borough and seize any dogs found to be straying.

Any dog found wandering unaccompanied in a public place is classed as a stray and will be dealt with by the dog wardens.

Strays are seized and detained at the kennels until the owner claims them.

After seven days, the dog becomes the property of the kennels and can be re-homed.

Your assistance in reporting to us any stray dogs is vital to help us keep the area free from roaming dogs and to keep the streets and public areas safe, clean and hygienic.

If the dog is still straying the dog warden will attend between 9am and 4pm, wherever possible within 30 minutes of it being reported, to attempt to seize the dog.

The more detail you can provide when reporting this will help us to successfully collect the dog. You will be asked for details such as:

  • Where and when the dog was seen roaming?
  • Is it still in the same location or what direction is it heading in?
  • What colour, size and breed is it?
  • Do you know who owns it or where it lives?

You can use the above forms or contact us.If the dog is still straying the dog warden will attend between 9am and 4pm, wherever possible within 30 minutes of it being reported, to attempt to seize the dog.

If you have found a stray dog and have taken it home and the dog is wearing a collar and tag giving details of the owner's name and address you should return it to that person if possible.

If this is not possible the dog warden will arrange to collect the stray dog at a time which is convenient to you. Where it is reported between 9am and 4pm we will, wherever possible, collect it within 30 minutes. If reported between 4pm and 5pm the dog will be collected the following working day.

After 5pm you can email us and the dog warden will contact you early the next working day to arrange a convenient time for collection.

All stray dogs which are picked up within Blackburn and Darwen will be taken to Aspen Valley boarding kennels and cattery.

Anyone wishing to collect their dog may do so during public opening times.

All fees must be paid at the time of collection and ID will be required, stating proof of name and address. Fees start at £60 for the first day a dog stays at the kennels and increase £9 per day up to a maximum of 8 days.

Any dogs which are not collected by their owners will be re-homed.

If you are interested in re-homing a dog then please contact Homeless Hounds

Keeping a stray or found dog

If you wish to keep a stray dog you are legally required to notify the dog warden.

You will be asked to sign a form agreeing to keep the dog for a minimum of 1 month unless claimed by the original owner.

If, within this time you decide you no longer are able to keep the dog it must be handed over to the dog warden.

You must not give the dog to family or friends because in the case of a dog being retained by the finder, the dog legally remains 'found property' and the original owner can reclaim it at any time. Therefore, the dog never truly becomes the property of the finder.

In all cases you will be asked to give relevant details such as where and when the dog was found, its size, colour, breed etc.

We will treat any information you give us in the strictest confidence.

Lost dogs

If you have lost a dog you should to report the dog as missing immediately.

You will need to give as many details as possible such as:

  • Where and when the dog was last seen?
  • What colour, size and breed is it?
  • Is it tagged or micro chipped?

Dogs have been known to stray a considerable distance from home so we advise that you make enquiries in the surrounding areas.

If your dog has been seized by the Council's dog warden it will have been taken immediately to will be taken to Aspen Valley boarding kennels and cattery. from where you will need to collect it within 7 days from the date it was seized by the dog warden.

Before your dog leaves the kennels, you will be required to pay any kennelling and/or veterinary charges that have been incurred. Contact Aspen Valley boarding kennels and cattery.

Seized dogs are taken to the kennels immediately and are kept for 7 full days, after which time the former owner no longer has any ownership rights to the dog and attempts will be made to re-home stray dogs wherever possible.

All dog owners have a legal responsibility for their dogs and their behaviour. Whilst your dog is straying you are unable to fulfil these responsibilities and have no control over your dog.

Dangerous dogs

If a dog is out of control in a public place - then the owner or the person in charge of the dog is guilty of an offence, or, if the dog while so out of control injures any person, it would then be considered an aggravated offence under the Dangerous Dogs Act 1991.

Report a dangerous dog

All dogs which are dangerously out of control, or have attacked people or animals may be classified as a dangerous dog and must be reported.

If it is a dog which is straying in a public place or on a highway that is out of control, and is not accompanied by a responsible person, it should then be reported to the Council.

Barking dogs

The problem of barking dogs within a person's home, yard or garden should be treated as a noise nuisance. Find out more about noise nuisance and what to do about it.

If a straying dog is causing a nuisance by persistently barking then report it as a stray dog.​​


Contact details

Mail Neighbourhood health, Davyfield Road, Blackburn BB1 2LX
Phone Number(s) 01254 585397
Fax Number(s) 01254 585865
Extra Information

To report stray dogs after 5pm please phone 07970 841192.

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