THE head of Southend council, Coun Tony Cox, has issued an apology to dog owners after a number of incidents that have seen pet injuries caused by long uncut grass.
In response to concerns about animal safety, Coun Cox has also affirmed a commitment to intensify grass cutting efforts across the entire borough, following a notable dispute regarding the grass-cutting procedures.
Dating back to April 2022, the former administration, led by the Labour party, disclosed a strategic approach, wherein certain park areas and grassy verges would undergo mowing just once a year, aligning with an agenda to foster biodiversity.
A study by The Guardian revealed that Southend was one of 43 councils across the UK that had adopted similar schemes.
Initially, Southend Council said the scheme would help them achieve net zero carbon emissions by 2030.
However, Owen Cartey, a Tory councillor representing West Leigh, had recently expressed concern that this year’s growth had presented safety risks and heralded the return of grass cutting a Highlands Boulevard and Sutherland Boulevard a “triumph,” earlier this month.
This victory was not without its backdrop of contention, adumbrated by the emerging issue of dog injuries.
Two separate incidents have come to light, both involving dogs whose owners were forced to bear substantial veterinarian bills caused by the occurrence of ‘grass darts’ becoming lodged in the animals’ paws and ears.
Phil Andrews, of Tankerville Drive, shared that he incurred expenses amounting to £1,500 due to a series of surgeries undergone by his six-year-old cocker spaniel named Maisey.
Within a span of two months, Maisey had to endure three surgeries to extract foreign objects from her ear.
In a particularly distressing incident, Maisey experienced profound discomfort and anguish, prompting the need for sedation in order to extract a deeply embedded seed.
In a new turn of events, Coun Cox has extended an apology and made a pledge to elevate the frequency of grass cutting activities.
Coun Cox said: “I sincerely apologise to the those involved.
“We are seeing more grass being cut on a regular basis, but I can assure we are going to be reviewing the grass managing policy to prevent these sorts of incidents from happening again.”
Picture: Maisey experienced profound discomfort and anguish.
Contact us. Email: [email protected]