With eight million dogs across Britain, the potential for public places to be riddled with unsightly and potentially dangerous mutt mess is as big as ever.

Indeed, the animal charity Dogs Trust has revealed that instances of dog fouling have risen for the first time in ten years, despite 64 per cent of people considering it the most abhorrent form of litter and a third of people saying they are willing to pick up other owner’s dog’s mess to keep their local area clean.

To try to clampdown on this problem before it gets out of hand, Dogs Trust has teamed up with Keep Britain Tidy and celebrity campaigner and dog enthusiast Ben Fogle to remind owners that while they should enjoy the great outdoors with their pooch, they must dispose of any mess properly.

“Thousands of pounds are spent each year on ensuring public spaces are kept clean and this could all be so much easier if dog owners remembered the simple message to ‘Bag it, Bin it,’” said Mr Fogle.

“Sadly it’s becoming a recurring sight to see bags of dog mess hanging from tree branches, fences, gates, basically anywhere but in a bin. It’s a two-step process and one which all dog owners need to be on board with. After all we all know that the dog poo fairy doesn’t exist.”

The campaign entitled The Big Scoop is aiming to connect with children, local councils and park wardens in the hope dog owners will become much more responsible.

Kids are to be dressed up in unique capes to make them into Scooper Heroes to help them show their support, while councils are to be handed free literature and dog poo bags to give out to people.

The activity is set to begin today (June 14th) and those interested can find out more information on the Big Scoop website.

Ambassador for Keep Britain Tidy and TV presenter Kirstie Allsopp thinks that people should approach selfish dog owners who choose to let their dogs relieve themselves without cleaning it up, and she has some tips on how to do it.

She said: “I would advise people to remain calm and if you have a spare bag offer this. Resist the urge to get angry and don’t approach anyone unless you feel confident to do so. If we all work together on campaigns such as The Big Scoop we can reap the benefits of clean and tidy streets and green spaces.”

Written by: Hannah