Sandwell Council got top marks from the RSPCA, for its work with the safety of pets in homes with the council’s housing team being awarded a Silver Community Animal Welfare Footprint (CAWF) from the animal welfare charity. The award recognises the council’s commitment to protect the welfare pets living in its properties and help given to tenants who are pet owners. The Council has guidance and policies in place encouraging responsible pet ownership and setting out what is and what is not expected of them.

Neglect, noise nuisance (dog barking), untidy gardens and properties where tenants don’t clean up after their pets, dogs running around unleashed and dog fouling all jeopardise a pet owners’ council tenancy.

Advice is given by Sandwell’s housing teams on what is expected of tenants who want to keep pets in their homes; from making sure all dogs wear collars with name and contact details on, keeping dogs on leads in communal areas and getting rid of pet fouling properly.

Councillor Kerrie Carmichael, Cabinet Member for Housing, said: “The standards set by the RSPCA are extremely high and I am delighted they have recognised the work we do with our tenants who are pet owners.”  

Since 2008, the RSPCA’s Community Animal Welfare Footprints scheme has been the only award scheme across England and Wales recognising good practice from local authorities, housing providers and contingency planners in relation to animal welfare.

The scheme celebrates good practice by rewarding those organisations exceeding basic and statutory service requirements with the aim of achieving higher animal welfare standards.