There’s nothing more likely to ruin a pleasant walk with your dog than stepping in dog poop. Even dog lovers don’t appreciate having to scrub poop from the soles of their shoes.
Picking up after your dog in parks and other public places prevents others stepping in their droppings, but more importantly, it can reduce the spread of parasites and bacterial infections to other dogs and to people.
And just think of all of the poop to be stepped in. One study said that 3.6 billion pounds of dog waste per year is produced in the United States equaling 800 football fields one foot high! And the city of Los Angeles reported that "walking dogs without picking up the poop droppings in L.A. at more than 82,000 times EACH MONTH.” YUCK!!!!
Pick Up That Poop
There are several health risks associated with leaving dog poop in public places.
1. Dogs can pass the eggs of intestinal worms in their feces. These can infect other dogs and if they have a large enough worm burden, they can become quite ill. People can also be infected with roundworm and hookworm eggs which may cause blindness and neurological problems.
2. Dogs can be infected with giardia and may not show any symptoms. However, if a human becomes infected with this little parasite, they may develop stomach cramps, gas and diarrhea. Giardia may survive in the environment and remain infective for quite some time.
3. Salmonella is a bacterial infection that can be spread from dogs to humans. It can be found in feces passed by infected dogs, and can infect people if they accidentally touch these feces and don’t wash their hands afterwards. It too causes diarrhea, but some people will develop further complications including arthritis.
Dog feces attract flies, and they help the spread of these diseases.
If dog poop is not picked up, it can also contaminate ground water, and be washed into lakes and streams. Poop contains nutrients which can promote the growth of algae. It can also use up oxygen as it decays, and the result is a less than perfect environment for the resident fish.
There have been studies done which show that some lakes and creeks contain high levels of fecal E coli bacteria, and it’s likely that dog poop is a major source of these bacteria.
Keeping It Clean
Picking up dog poop may not be the most savory job, but as you’ve seen, it’s very necessary. There are some ways of making it easier and more environmentally friendly.
If you use a plastic bag for picking up poop, consider using a biodegradable one. Regular plastic bags can take many hundreds of years to break down in landfill.
You can put your bag of dog poop in the trash can, but when you consider the number of dogs in a city,that’s a lot of trash. You can flush the poop down the toilet, and it will be treated at the sewage treatment plant.
Many people use dog poop in their compost bin, or in their worm farm. Compost containing dog poop is best used on flowers and trees, rather than on food producing plants. If you’re going to put dog poop in a worm farm, make sure you don’t do it straight after you give your dog a worming tablet. Most worming products don’t mind which type of worm they kill.
After you’ve picked up your dog’s poop, have a quick look under his tail to make sure he is clean. If he needs a spruce up, Dry Dog Instant Clean is the product you need. This all-natural spray cleanses his fur without needing water or rinsing, and its active ingredient, Ordenone removes all trace of bad smell.
Another reason to pick up your dogs poop is that it’s illegal in many cities not to! If you decide to let your dog poop in public in London without proper removal, you could get a hefty $750 ticket!
If everyone picked up their dog poop when they went walking, just imagine how much cleaner our environment would be!