Villagers whose community has been blighted by dog mess have taken matters into their own hands – with an interactive “poop-shaming map”.
People living in Wimblington in Cambridgeshire have become so fed-up with the faecal street furniture they have created a social media-based “poopfolio”, where locals report sightings of dog mess.
The idea, called “Doodoowatch” when it was conceived on social media less than a week ago, has already seen a marked reduction in the amount of poop peppering parks, pathways and pavements around Wimblington.
Businesswoman Amanda Carlin, who helps run social media pages in the village, said she has been pleasantly surprised with the way the campaign has taken off.
She told the Press Association: “At one stage the dog poop problem was really bad.
“I must admit I have always seen people picking up after their dogs in the village, but the mess has got to have come from somewhere.
“We think it was either late at night or in the morning (that dog walkers were leaving mess behind). But now the situation is much better.
“We didn’t have any sightings on Friday, and only one sighting on Saturday so far – that’s really excellent.”
The map works as a deterrent by having local people post sightings of the mess on the Wimblington PE15 Facebook and Twitter pages, sometimes accompanied by images.
The page administrators then update the map with a brown poop icon, warning walkers about the danger zones. The icon changes to pink when the mess has been cleared up.
Mrs Carlin, who has an 11-year-old Yorkshire terrier cross called Molly, said the majority of people have welcomed the interactive map.
She said: “One or two people have said they don’t want our village to be known for dog mess.
“But I say the opposite – we are much cleaner now, and it also shows we are a village which has found a problem and then worked to find a solution. That’s very positive and everyone should be proud.”
Mrs Carlin also praised the local Fenland Parish Council for stepping up its own dog mess patrols – sometimes at anti-social hours – in an effort to clamp down on the rogue dog owners.