DOG dirt in Whalley is being sprayed bright red in an attempt to shame irresponsible dog owners.

The project, which is believed to be the first of its kind in the Ribble Valley, is a joint initiative between Whalley Parish Council and Ribble Valley Borough Council.

The idea behind the scheme is to raise public awareness of the problem, and to act as an incentive for more people to report dog fouling.

Owners who do not pick up after their pets face being fined if they are reported to the council.

Efforts to highlight issues are dog dirt are being concentrated on the path between Whalley Parish Church and Whalley Church of England Primary School.

Once the dog mess has been sprayed, the fouling and soluble red spray will be left for a day before being removed by the council.

Representatives from Ribble Valley Borough Council and Walley Parish Council said that dog fouling was an issue that was of great concern to residents.

Ribble Valley Borough Council’s head of environmental health, James Russell said: “Complaints about dog issues are the second highest received by the council each year and residents are demanding action on the issue.

“Most dog owners are responsible and pick up after their pets, but there is an irresponsible minority who do not and it is unbelievable that some are letting their pets foul near a primary school.

“We have sprayed the faeces red to highlight the problem and drum home the message that dog owners must pick up their pet poop or face the consequences.

“We would like Whalley residents to identify the offenders and tell us who they are.”