The wildlife committee believes so many dog owners leave the dog loose that people have ceased to report people who do not keep the law about leash.
– For each year, it is getting worse. People are so concerned their dogs well being, that they don’t care about anything else.
These days, for example, small deer are located right next to footpaths and cycle paths, and the dog knows it all right. With a snap, the calf is finished, “said Thor Pinaas, deputy chairman of Sarpsborg Wildlife Council.
The leash-law applies from the period 1 April to 20 August, and is written in the Dog Act. Failure to complie this can result in fines.
“The leash-law is there to take care of wildlife, and to guard other people who are out and about,” says Villy Meier, police chief of operations.
Asks dog owners to respect the leash-law
Cecilie Holgersen, head of communications at Norsk Kennel Klub, is also concerned and asks dog owners to respect the leash-law.
– It’s there to protect wildlife in a vulnerable phase. I hope dog owners can tell each other. If you meet someone who does not have the dog in leash then you should tell them.
She points out that the dog still needs to feel freedom.
“It’s not natural for the dog to be in constant leash, it needs to be run around. And we therefore encourage municipalities to create dog parks and dog forests, where the dog can run freely.
It’s a police case
Thor Pinaas believes there is a problem that the police do not have time to take care of the leash-law.
“It’s a police case, because it’s a violation of the law. But, of course, they have other priorities, and itshows on peoples attitudes. People have stopped reporting because it is so common for people to go with the dog loose.
Operations manager in Østfold police, Villy Meier agrees that there is a problem that the police can not follow up the leash-law.
“But there are many laws that are given, but as the police do not have the time and capacity to carry out control,” he says.
He points out that the police still press charges if there are special events with a dog that has not been kept in leash.
“If we get an complain that someone is walking without leash and that the dog has been bothering others, then the police may press charges.”