Angry dog owners are fighting an East Dorset District Council proposal which, among other controls, would see them banned from walking their pets on sports fields.

The consultation process over this very controversial issue continues until Wednesday.

Already restricted from walking their dogs on some beaches at certain times of the year and from some heathland to protect ground nesting birds, I have sympathy for owners who must be starting to feel very marginalised.

After consultation with parish and town councils, the district council is proposing three orders – to tackle fouling, to keep dogs on leads in certain public areas and to ban them completely from others.

And it wants to hear as many views as possible so that it can come to the right decision for everyone.

Although I know this won’t be popular with many, I believe a ban on people walking their dogs on sports fields/recreation grounds and their immediate vicinity can’t come soon enough.

I’m appalled when I walk across the sports fields near me on my way to Moors Valley Country Park to see owners letting their dogs run free all over the clearly marked rugby and football pitches.

Some owners pick up what their dogs leave behind, but the disappointing truth is that lots don't. And it's not just the huge dollops of mess that are a problem. The urine, which obviously can’t be removed, is just as bad.

Can it really be right that dog after dog should be allowed to wee up a goal post when the owners know that some poor keeper is probably going to want to stash their kit there?

In other countries there are fenced off areas in parks and urban open spaces for owners to take their dogs in to. Perhaps this will be brought in here. I’d love to own a dog, a rescue greyhound (or two) or maybe a standard poodle.

When I was little I used to take my aunty’s labrador for walks and pretend the friendly stray mutt I saw on the way to school – and which we named Brandy – was my own.

And if I did own a dog I’d open the back door and let it poo and wee in my garden before I took it out for a walk.

To view the proposed dog control orders, visit