Benalmádena dog owners obliged to wash away their pets' urine

Free water bottles were distributed in Benalmádena this week.
Free water bottles were distributed in Benalmádena this week. / SUR
  • Police officers will issue fines to owners who do not carry a bottle of soapy water or vinegar to dilute their animal's urine in public areas

Benalmádena town hall has approved a new law that forces dog owners to carry a bottle of soapy water when walking their pets to reduce the effects of canine urination in public areas.

The new law is an amendment to the town's existing bylaw concerning pets, which also declares that all dogs must be microchipped and have a DNA profile registered at the town hall.

The legislation will come in to effect following a short information and awareness period, after which, the local police will begin fining owners who do not carry a mixture of water and soap, or vinegar, to dilute their pets urine.

Mayor of Benalmádena, Víctor Navas, and councillor for Health and Safety, Alicia Laddaga, along with representatives of the Benalmádena-based Velarde Dog Club, launched the awareness programme this week, offering information and distributing free water bottles to dog owners in Arroyo de la Miel.

Laddaga claimed that the new law will help contribute to a cleaner town, adding: "The urine dries quickly on the street if it is not diluted, causing problems of bad smells and unhealthiness. Diluting it with soapy water will avoid this problem and make coexistence more bearable."

However, the new law has been met with mixed reactions among the local community.

Benalmádena resident Cheryl Smile told SUR in English: "They should be doing this. In the last year the streets have got worse. The sooner something is done the better."

Rebecca Thomas was not so optimistic: "I think it will be hard to police and will probably only be followed by a minority. Anyhow, where will this end? Dog owners are being penalised when there are other avenues to explore."