Today I am joining in the “Scoop That Poop” Blog Hop sponsored by my friends, Sugar the Golden Retriever, GeoGizmo, and Garth Riley. Thank you to these sponsors for bringing attention to this important, not so often talked about subject!
Poop is not a real fun subject, but it is an important topic that needs to be addressed since dog poop is not going away! The average dog will produce around 274 pounds of poop each year! That poop needs to be disposed of, as it is a toxic substance! Poop should not be left anywhere, but my post today is zeroing in on those landmines in yards. Humans flush right after they do their business, so why should dog business not be flushed/picked up right away as well?
The first thing humans need to learn is that there is NO poop fairy. We dogs will poop, and unless our human picks up after us, it will stay where we did it. Actually, it won’t stay there, which is part of the problem. As time passes, other creatures, and weather will transport it causing many different issues.
Every dog parent needs to figure out what works best for their lifestyle. We have our “no pooping in the yard” rule. No landmines at our house! Mom goes nuts when she visits someone and they tell her to watch out for landmines in the yard. Our policy since day one with Mom is to walk and do our business, then come home, and play in the yard. Mom says she has to pick up after us no matter what, so why not exercise and pick it up right when poop happens. We always enjoy watching our neighbors hunting poop in their grass with a bucket and shovel or in the winter chipping it out of the ice and snow. Poop is so much easier to grab right when it happens!
Mom says that poop is a bit like diapers – something you just get used to. She has no problem picking it up for us, but she does draw the line with poop from other dogs. To clarify, my friends are not considered “other dogs”, so she picks up after them too. To handle our poop pick up we have our “bag of bags”, a collection of plastic shopping bags without holes and we have a couple bag dispensers that attach to leashes, purses, belt buckles, and other handy spots. Mom has a stash of bags in the car, most pants pockets, her purse, she never wants to be caught bagless! Mom figures that for us two dogs, we leave three to four piles a day which means 21 to 28 bags a week. Add in a guest dog at my B&B and we are talking around 35-40 bags a week! Partly to save bags, and partly to make it easier than carrying more than one bag, Mom will pick up two or three piles with the same bag. We are lucky in our area because there are quite a few trash cans, so she uses the same bag until the trash can comes along. This saves at least 1/3 of the amount of bags.
Why is picking up poop right away, even on your own lawn, so important? Just one gram of dog poop contains around 23 million fecal bacteria and the longer it stays on the lawn, the greater a contamination it becomes! This bacteria is transmitted in three ways:
- Lawn care – if your lawn equipment or your shoes go through it, it spreads the fecal matter around your yard
- Flies – flies feet contain some six million bacteria, flies love poop, and pick up even more bacteria landing on it. Millions of other diseases are spread by non-biting flies
- Air, wind and rain – the air, wind and rain spread the fecal matter around the lawn bringing it to many parasites that live in the soil or wet areas, many of which can live a year or longer
I’m not saying that everyone has to walk their dogs several times a day so they can do their pooping, although lots of walking is good for the dog and the human. I want to make the point that poop should not be left lying around and should be picked up asap! If you let your dog out in the rain to poop and don’t go pick it up right away, that bacteria starts to spread in the rain water. Poop needs to be picked up!