Scoop the Poop: It's Your Environmental Doody (Pun Intended)

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By Nyssa Baechler

You have probably seen the many different iterations of the same signs: some ask, some tell, and some threaten by using pleasantries, profanity, or puns to get you to pick up your dog’s poop. Whether the signs make you giggle or gasp, the message is clear —Be responsible and scoop the poop! However, the entire reasoning behind the signs might not be so clear.

As a dog owner, I have   unfortunately found myself without a bag when my pup decides to “do his thing” in public. I have been forced to get very creative in these situations in order to avoid public ‘poo-shaming’ or have made the decision to forego scooping and hope it doesn’t come back to haunt me in my dreams. Yet, I used to never bat an eye when my dog chose to ‘go’ further off the trail in the wilderness or out of sight of passersby. Picking up your dog’s waste is part of the responsibility of being a dog owner and is especially important in urban areas so it doesn’t end up on the bottom of someone else’s shoe. But did you know that it is not just a social responsibility (and an avoidance of ‘poo-shaming’) but also an environmental responsibility to pick up Fido’s poop whenever and wherever he chooses to ‘go’? There is undeniable scientific evidence that dog waste is not just an urban menace: it is an environmental pollutant and a human health hazard!

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