In your yard, neighborhood, and the Dog Park, it’s always a good idea!
Dog poop is a problem we deal with on a daily basis. It’s estimated that at least 40% of dog owners leave their pet’s poop where it lands, never giving it a second thought. With nearly 75 million dogs in the United States alone, that’s a lot of poop being left behind!
But is pet waste a health hazard? Yes. In fact, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has classified pet waste as a dangerous pollutant in the same category as toxic chemicals and oil. The U.S. Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) states that pet waste can spread canine parvovirus and parasites including hookworms, ringworms, tapeworms and Salmonella. And parasite eggs can linger for years! When a human or animal comes into contact with that soil, they risk infection from those eggs.
Many people think that dog poop is good for soil, plants, and grasses, but the reality is that dog poop is NOT good fertilizer. It’s toxic to your lawn! The high nitrogen concentration in dog poop will burn and discolor your grass.
In addition, un-scooped poop from your yard or the dog park is carried by overland water flow or is washed into storm drains, ending up in nearby away streams, lakes and rivers. This contaminates our sources of drinking water. Pet waste is teaming with E. Coli and other harmful bacteria including fecal coliform bacteria, which causes serious kidney disorders, intestinal illness, cramps and diarrhea in humans. (There are 23 million fecal coliform bacteria in a single gram of pet waste!) Water polluted by dog feces is also harmful to our native plants and wildlife.
Flush it or trash it! According to the EPA, flushing it down the toilet is the safest way to dispose of dog poop. It will go through the wastewater treatment system where the bacteria and parasites are killed. When at the Dog Park, use one of the biodegradable bags provided by the city to pick it up and put it in the trash.
Join the growing number of responsible pet owners who recognize the responsibility of cleaning up after your pet. Even when no one is looking, it’s always the right thing to do.