Cheshire West and Chester Council’s stray dogs service achieves gold standard for eleventh year

Cheshire West and Chester Council has been recognised in the 2022 RSPCA PawPrint Awards, picking up a Gold accolade for the eleventh year in a row.

The Council scooped the Gold Community Animal Welfare Pawprint (CAWF) Award for exceeding legal requirements in the way it handles stray dogs.  The Awards celebrate local authorities that go above and beyond to ensure high animal welfare standards in their communities.

The national animal charity has once again recognised the hard work and dedication of Council staff involved in the collection and re-homing of stray dogs.

Council officers also enforce the Public Spaces Protection Order that was updated last year relating to dogs, issuing Fixed Penalty Notices to combat incidents of dog fouling or other related breaches of the legislation.

The Council’s Cabinet Member for Environment, Highways and Strategic Transport, Councillor Karen Shore said, “Eleven years of Gold standard awards for our work with stray dogs is a wonderful achievement.  Many thanks to everyone involved in our stray dog service.

“Dog owners can really help our Public Protection team by ensuring that their pets are kept safe, are tagged and microchipped and by picking up after them.  It is a legal requirement for a dog to be both microchipped and to have a tag with their owner’s name and address; a telephone number on the tag is helpful too.

“We’ve recently seen a trend of dogs being microchipped but keeper details not being registered or updated.  Please make sure you register your details and keep them up-to-date. As well as being legal requirements, getting your dog tagged and microchipped means you can be reunited with them as quickly as possible if they go astray.”

During dog warden working hours, any dogs collected in Cheshire West and Chester are scanned immediately for the presence of a microchip and, if possible, returned immediately to their owner.  If there is no microchip, the collar information will be used, if available.  If return is not possible at this time, the dog is taken to the kennels.  Outside of working hours, dogs are taken immediately to the kennels and are scanned on arrival.  

In 2021, only 28% of dogs were returned to their owners immediately; in the majority of cases owners could not be identified or contacted by the warden, or were picked up out of hours.  Many more dogs than the Council becomes aware of may have been returned without the intervention of the dog warden as finders are able to identify the owner by the collar information.

If you need to report a stray dog the following telephone numbers can be used:• Telephone: 0300 123 7038 (option 1) 8am – 7pm, Monday to Friday. Outside of these hours (including weekends and Bank Holidays) – call 0300 123 7035

Image: Casper has a very important message for dog owners

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