A COUNCILLOR who lost the sight in one eye as a result of dog fouling has backed calls for a new hotline to tackle issues with pets in the county.

Undercover wardens could also be recruited from parish and town authorities within the Dorset Council area.

Councillor David Taylor told a committee this week that the authority needed to expand its work.

He said that having lost the sight in one eye when he was younger as a result of dog fouling, he wanted to see an improvements in tackling the problem.

He has also called for better education to persuade dog owners to be more responsible.

The committee heard that many dogs carry infections which can be transferred to people via their urine, faeces, or saliva. Cllr Taylor said it's a particular risk in areas where children play.

The council's public protection manager Graham Duggan said more could be done by the council to spread information about the risks from dogs and to encourage better behaviour from owners.

“We could be a lot smarter with our use of social media – that’s something we will be working on,” he told colleagues and councillors.

Cllr Simon Gibson, a dog owner, said although education was important, enforcement should come first.

“Let’s do social media," he said.

"It’s relatively cheap and quick, but people should know that they shouldn’t let their dogs foul, or there could be consequences."

The rural county’s dog warden and animal welfare service costs £200,000 a year to run with its four staff spending most of their time dealing with around 300 dogs a year.

A third of the dogs dealt with by the service need collection by a warden.