I am just writing with regard to the issue of dog fouling on-site that I mentioned in the January 2021 Council Meeting Minute Discussions. This problem has been long-running and despite huge efforts to request that dog owners pick up after their dogs, it is still the issue that we get most complaints about. In fact, members of the club upon joining are given a copy of the Articles of Association and the company Bye-laws and agree to honour them. This includes the following Bye-law:
Any dog brought onto the Club’s premises by a member, his family or visitors, shall at all times whilst on the premises be kept under COMPLETE control by him or them, so as to cause no nuisance, annoyance or damage."
Judging by the number of complaints that council receive about dog-fouling, it is clear that this rule is not being adhered to by all and, although dog fouling is not specifically mentioned, there can be no doubt that it causes "nuisance, annoyance and damage" and is potentially damaging to health as well. This situation is completely unfair to members who do not own or, even dislike dogs and, it is extremely galling to those responsible dog owners who go out of their way to make as sure as possible to comply with the rules. Unfortunately, the only response to this problem is to tighten up the rules. The following changes to the rules are to be introduced immediately:
"4/ DOGS Any dog brought onto the Club’s premises by a member, his family or visitors, shall at all times whilst on the premises be kept under control by him or them, so as to cause no nuisance, annoyance or damage to club members or, property of the club and its members, their family or visitors. Specifically:
4.1 All dogs should be kept on leads except when owners are playing or interacting with them. Whilst off-lead, dogs should be under full supervision and in clear sight of their owner at all times. Dogs are not permitted to roam free at any time.
4.2 All playing/interacting with dogs off leads should be at a safe and respectful distance from other club members unless express permission has been sought from any member who may be affected.
4.3 Dogs off lead should not be allowed to play with other member's dogs to prevent the risk of them getting out of control.
4.4 Dog fouling is prohibited. Any dog poo should be immediately and hygienically removed, by the dog's owner, from where it has been deposited to be disposed of off-site at the earliest opportunity.
Should these rules not be strictly followed, NBCYC reserves the right to introduce an immediate “leads only” policy and other impositions and/or penalties for members failing to comply.”
Given that it were to prove necessary, so that council can be seen to have acted fairly in introducing a future rule change requiring dogs to be on leads at all times, we are asking members, particularly dog owners, the following question:
"Are you aware of any extenuating circumstances that would reasonably exempt any dog owners from being required to keep their dogs on leads at all times whilst on NBCYC grounds?"
I do not think that any members of council believe that there are any such circumstances but, given that the rule change would not be universally popular, it is only fair to give due consideration to any reasonable case that is made even though it is unlikely to impact on the decision were it found to be necessary.
Please could any member wishing to make any case for objection to or exemption from a potential future “dogs on leads only” rule change reply to this email by Friday 26th February at the latest.
Many thanks and kind regards,
Neville Lacey (Commodore NBCYC)