IRRESPONSIBLE dog owners were targeted by police across St Helens as part of a two-day operation.
But, innovatively, letters of thanks were also issued to responsible owners found to be carrying dog excrement bags.
Acting sergeant Phelps, from Merseyside Police’s dog section, joined forces with Sgt Barcroft, from the Thatto Heath neighbourhood team for the 48-hour operation.
Council workers and RSPCA representatives also turned out at Sherdley Park, Thatto Heath Park, Taylor Park, Queens Park, Gaskell Park, the Duckeries in Parr and the land surrounding the Dream statue at Sutton Manor.
Police visited several addresses across the borough to assess dogs following reports of anti-social behaviour by neighbours. As a result, a number of local dog owners were issued with advice regarding the management of their dogs in public.
The operation was run in conjunction with Operation Springwatch - a joint initiative between police and St Helens Council aimed at tackling anti social behaviour.
During the two-day operation, nine dogs were micro chipped, 10 dog owners were issued with free neutering vouchers, 25 dogs were examined to assess their breed and one court summons was served.
Warning letters were sent to owners who were not in possession of dog excrement bags, but letters of thanks were issued to those that were.
Anyone with information about suspected banned breeds or dog-related incidents can call Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.