Regular readers of The Westmorland Gazette may recall the various articles that appeared last year regarding dog fouling and control of dogs, including South Lakeland District Council's proposals to enact certain dog control orders (backed up by a questionn-aire and local 'road show').

I wonder how many of those same readers were aware of the Notice inserted by SLDC in the January 31 edition of the Gazette, inviting representations regarding the four dog control orders now being proposed?

Three of the orders are to be welcomed and are, I think, likely to be regarded as perfectly sensible by most people (those regarding dog fouling, specific problem dogs being required to be put on leads, and dogs being excluded from certain specified places such as cemetaries and play areas).

However, there is a fourth dog control order that most certainly is not sensible or to be welcomed - the draft (or should that be 'daft') Dogs on Leads (South Lakeland District Council) Order.

That order - the detail of which may be viewed at - is truly an example of using 'a sledgehammer to crack a nut'!

The order is badly thought-out and, I suspect, unenforceable. It is certainly inappropriate in an area which is largely rural or semi-rural, including a National Park!

Representations regarding any or all of the proposed dog control orders may be made in writing to Keith Moore, the Customer Service Manager, South Lakeland District Council, South Lakeland House, Lowther Street, Kendal LA9 4UQ, or by e-mail to , before noon on March 4.

I sincerely hope that anyone who values the right to walk their (well-behaved) dogs freely in South Lakeland will take the time to make their views known to the council, even if only by a single-line e-mail message.

C.A. Minahan, Natland