Be a Responsible Dog Owner – Always Pick Up The Poop!
- 5 million Dogs living in the UK, which amounts to an enormous amount of dog poop!
- Just 1 gram of dog poo is the equivalent to 23 million dangerous germs
Dog Excrement isn’t really something that we really like talking about, yet as a dog owner, it’s probably in your thoughts at some point during the day. Poop happens, but just what do you know about your pet’s faecal matter? Dogs produce loads of the poop each day, and while we may never know to the exact kilo how much, you can be sure that dogs around the UK are producing an awful lot.
As a professional Dog Walker and Pet Sitter, I scoop up a lot of dog waste, and I’m always amazed at how much poop each dog can produce. I’m certainly no expert on the subject, but I do know that there are certain etiquette rules when it comes to picking up the stuff, and the reasons why we all need to.
Contamination from dog poo
If you’ve ever allowed your dog to do its business in your garden, you’ve most likely thought that it would at least fertilize the grass, this isn’t true. Dog waste contains many bacteria including Salmonella and E.Coli, and a number of unhealthy parasites that can affect other animals and humans too.
Always pick it up your Dog Poo
Dog poo is disgusting stuff! I don’t really enjoy walking down the street, or on a pathway in the woods, to find that I’ve stepped in the mess that your dog has left behind. Children running around on the playing field, don’t want to discover that they stepped into something that has an offending smell and will stick to their shoes for the rest of the day.
How to best dispose of dog poo
- Use a bio-degradable bag to pick it up and dispose of in the bin. Each day around 17 million dog poos in the UK need to be picked up. If you use normal plastic poop bags or nappy bags, this means that there are 17 million unrecyclable bags in use.
- In an emergency, reuse your plastic carrier bags
- Flush the poo down your toilet – usually acceptable for dog poo but not for cat excrement, which has bacteria that will survive water treatment processes.
- Most councils provide dog waste bins at locations such as parks, footpaths, pedestrian areas, grass verges and beach promenades, or if not available on your walking route, dispose of the waste in a public litter bin.
What is the fine if you don’t pick up your dog’s waste?
The Dog Fouling Act dated 2016 places the accountability on whoever is in charge of the dog at the time, even if the animal isn’t yours. An on-the-spot fine of between £50 and £80 can result if you fail to pick up the dog’s poop. This cost varies between different counties, and in some cases can even end up with you going to court where you could face an even bigger fine of up to £1000. You may also be fined if you don’t carry poo bags or a pooper scooper when out walking with your pet. If you suspect someone isn’t adhering to this law, you can report them to your local council via their website page. Neighbourhood wardens will investigate any offence, and take any action necessary.
DNA in dog mess
A new venture in some London boroughs is currently underway to match the DNA from dog fouling samples to dogs registered on a database. Currently, owners are being advised to voluntarily register their dogs, and in its early stages is being used to gather evidence of considerate dog owners in these areas. It is thought that in future, compulsory micro-chipping will also include a swab test which will be registered on this DNA database.
If you have a dog, its common courtesy, and common sense – be a responsible owner and clean up after your pet when out on your dog walk.