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Mayor Plans Doggy DNA Check to Punish Soiling

December 1st, 2016 · No Comments · France, Languedoc

This is one of those things that seems unworkable and maybe a bit crazy … right until you step in a pile of poo left behind by someone’s dog.

The mayor of Beziers, the biggest city in this part of the Languedoc, wants to collect DNA samples from the city’s dogs.


So that those dogs that leave behind feces in public places can be identified through DNA tests and their owners fined.

Here is the story, translated from the original French source.

This attempt by Mayor Robert Menard has some history. Earlier this year a court in Montpellier said the proposed law was “repressive” and illegal.

The mayor appealed the ruling and a higher court, in Marseille, “ruled that the DNA plan was ‘disproportionate to the demands of public health and safety’, but said that in principle it was not illegal”.

Walking through dog poo is pretty much a condition of living in France.

It seems dire in Paris, despite occasional campaigns to combat it, as visitors to the City of Dog Dirt can attest. There is something particularly deflating in that moment when you realize your shoe is now a mess.

Dogs have a special status in France. They are allowed inside most restaurants and public transport, for instance, and the idea that they can relieve themselves … wherever … seems pretty much accepted.

Right up till a person realizes he has stepped in it.

It seems unlikely that Beziers can afford to set up a DNA registry, never mind run expensive DNA tests to identify errant owners and mail them a 39 euro fine.

But there are times when we wish French cities could … and they would.


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