Safe dog ownership a focus as Sefton Council approves Dog Control Public Spaces Protection Order

19 April 2024 4 min read

Residents in Sefton are being reminded to keep their dogs and others safe as the Council renews its Dog Control Public Spaces Protection Order (PSPO).

At yesterday’s Full Council meeting (Thursday 18th April), members agreed to keep the current PSPO in place for another three years.

Keeping the Borough safe

The new PSPO is based on the current guidelines and reinforces the need for responsible dog ownership across the Borough. As well as highlighting an offence for not safely disposing of dog fouling, the Order:

  • Restricts the number of dogs that can be walked by one person to a maximum of six dogs on or off the lead.A dog on a lead
  • Prohibits dogs from entering enclosed playgrounds and fenced sports pitches, including multi use game sport facilities.
  • Prohibits dogs from entering marked sports pitches during specified times.
  • Requires dogs to be kept on a lead within defined picnic sites and family areas in parks.
  • Requires dogs to be kept on a lead within all designated carriageways (A and B classified Road) and footways.
  • Requires dogs to be kept on a lead within all cemeteries and crematoria.
  • Requires dogs to be placed on a lead when directed by an authorised officer to prevent a nuisance or behaviour by the dog likely to cause annoyance or disturbance to members of the public.
  • States that dog leads must be no greater than 2 metres in length when used in the public spaces.

Peter Moore, Sefton Council’s Assistant Director of Place (Highways & Public Protection), said: “We know that the majority of dog owners in Sefton are responsible and follow the measures in the Order already, meaning that the extension  of the PSPO will have minimal impact on them.

“However, by renewing these measures for a further three years, we can continue to highlight the need for responsible dog ownership and retain important powers for addressing people who do not act responsibly, helping us to ensure that Sefton’s green spaces, footpaths and highways remain welcoming for everyone.”

Safe dog control

The PSPO applies to all publicly accessible land in the borough, so the Council is urging Sefton’s dog owners to treat all public spaces with care and to understand the rules that apply in the places they take their dogs. This includes removing dog waste and placing it in an appropriate bin as well as keeping dogs under control at all times.

While many dogs are friendly to strangers and other animals, those they meet may be nervous and would prefer to not be approached by a dog. It is recommended to keep dogs on leads wherever possible. Full details of the rules can be found online.

The details of the PSPO were decided following an in-depth consultation with 340 residents, organisations, and community groups.

A PSPO is an official measure that is an enforceable part of the Anti-Social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act 2014. They are used to protect the public from behaviour that is likely to have a harmful effect on their quality of life.

People can find out more about the PSPO, including affected areas at

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