The dog days of summer are upon us, and with them comes lots of outdoor activities including time with our canine friends. And dogs = dog poop.
Dogs are capable of eating nearly anything, and with that comes more bacteria in their guts than even our own. Their feces can contain parasites and bacteria that are contagious to humans. When canine poop is left on the ground, rain runoff can pick up nutrients and bacteria in dog poop and carry it to our nearby streams and Lake Erie. So dog poop should be disposed of properly.
But what is properly? Those environmentally inclined may scoff at the use of plastic bags creating more waste in landfills. But given the choice between polluting our waters and our yards, bagging is a much better option. Hint: You have to actually throw the bag in the trash. Don't just leave it on the beach, trail, or your neighbors lawn.
But there are other solutions for those that want to go above and beyond for the environment on behalf of their pooch.
- The easiest is to use biodegradable bags.
- Beyond that is flushing your pups waste.
- You can dig a hole at least one foot deep to bury it (being sure to avoid groundwater sources).
- There are dog waste digester systems called Doggy Dooley's.
Picking up poop isn't the most fun activity, but it's your responsibility because your pup can't. You can make the pledge to pick up poop with Northeast Ohio Regional Sewer District and order signs to remind your neighbors to do the same.
Added bonus: An audio blast from the past from NEORSD. I will never forget the first time I heard this on the radio.
Blog Author: Elizabeth Hiser, Natural Resources Coordinator