London's Pulse: Medical Officer of Health reports 1848-1972

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Kensington 1955

[Report of the Medical Officer of Health for Kensington Borough]

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Dog Nuisances
Apart from being an objectionable social offence, fouling
of footways by dogs is a public health nuisance for which an
adequate remedy is hard to find.
While it has been shown that dogs can carry and excrete
germs capable of producing illness in man, it is seldom that
cases of human disease can positively be related to infections
originating from this source. Nevertheless, such instances
do occur and the potential risk cannot be ignored. Certainly
dog filth is an attraction to flies and blowflies, with
consequent possibilities of conveyance of infection.
The main objection, however, to the fouling of pavements
and grass verges by dog excreta is the nauseating revulsion,
embarrassment and distress caused by chance pollution of shoes,
clothing, mats and carpets, necessitating disgusting and timeconsuming
cleansing operations.
The Council's byelaw dealing with this nuisance provides
"No person being in charge of a dog shall allow
the animal to foul the footway of any street or public
place by depositing its excrement thereon. For the
purpose of this byelaw the owner of the dog shall be
deemed to be in charge thereof, unless the Court is
satisfied that at the time when the dog fouled the
footway it had been placed in or taken into the charge
of some other person."
During the year seven summonses were issued under this
byelaw. Two were subsequently withdrawn and in the other
five cases convictions were obtained and fines totalling
£2. 10s. 0d. were imposed and costs amounting to £3. 3s. 0d.
wore awarded to the Council.
The Council have accepted the responsibility, within
their powers, for co-ordinating and assisting in the extension
of activities for aged persons and to alleviate unsatisfactory
conditions under which many old people are living.
Co-operation with voluntary bodies interested in the
welfare of old people is effected wherever possible. In order
that action taken shall be uniform, the Kensington Old
People's Welfare Voluntary Committee act as an intermediary
between the Council and the voluntary bodies. Four members
of the Public Health Committee serve on the Old People's
Welfare Voluntary Committee which acts as a co-ordinating nonexecutive
Committee through which voluntary bodies claim
assistance from the Council and through which the Council pass
requests for executive action.
Advice Leaflets
The Council arrange for the distribution of a pamphlet
giving information of the services available to old people
individually or through a club.
S.O.S. Cards
Window display cards are provided by the Council, bearing
the letters "S.O.S" in red on one side and, on the reverse side,