Dog fouling in public places is hazardous and unsanitary, and the problem makes up most complaints about dogs to Dublin Corporation.
Dog owners cause a health hazard by not removing dog faeces from public places. Dog faeces carry an infection known as toxocariasis, caused by roundworms in the dog's intestine. Children are most commonly affected by toxocariasis as they are the most likely to handle contaminated soil.
The Litter Pollution Act 1997 requires dog owners to clean up after their pets if they foul in public places. There is an on-the-spot fine, which if it is not paid, can lead to a prosecution with a much larger penalty.
Guide dogs for the blind and dogs used by the Gardaí and Customs and Excise are exempted from all these rules.