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Paris Gets Tough on Its Dog Owners

September 4, 2002

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PARIS (AP) _ Parisian dog owners beware: get out your scoopers or be prepared to pay a $182 fine.

That’s the latest warning from Deputy Mayor Yves Contassot, who wants to change dog-friendly Paris’ reputation as one of Europe’s messiest capitals.

``I am for a simple principle: if you pollute, you pay,″ Contassot said told a news conference Wednesday.

Authorities plan to plaster the city with thousands of posters carrying stern warnings against leaving behind dog droppings, or any other litter.

``Everything must disappear,″ the notices read. ``Dog droppings not scooped up mean a fine of 183 euros ($182).″

The campaign is part of renewed efforts to enforce a decree City Hall issued in April that extended a ban against leaving dog droppings on the sidewalk to include the street.

The fine also applied to anyone who dropped any kind of litter in the street. But the decree was barely enforced because of staff shortages and because some 13,500 city trash cans were closed as a precaution against terror attacks.

Now, there’s no excuse. Not only have the trash cans been replaced by transparent green trash bags, but their numbers have increased to 18,700, Contassot said.

About 90 municipal workers will patrol the streets and ticket those of the city’s 200,000 dog owners who fail to scoop up after their pets.

``What I want is for Paris to never again be called a dirty city,″ Contassot said.

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