Dog fouling is an issue you might not think about until you leave the house and see those doggy deposits all over the grass. Whether you have a dog or not, people agree that leaving a dog’s mess is unacceptable and needs to be handled more efficiently. In terms of solutions, many new methods are being attempted to improve everyone’s life outside.
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Facts About Dog Fouling
If you don’t know, dog fouling is quite simply when owners leave their doggy deposits everywhere without picking them up. With 8 million dogs in Britain alone, you can imagine how much stuff that would end up being (it’s actually close to 1,000 tons!). Leaving out deposits isn’t only smelly and gross to look at, but can even lead to diseases like toxicarisis.
You might think it’s obvious for people to pick up their doggy’s stuff, but well, not everyone is as conscientious as you. Dog mess is actually a very common issue with 4/10 people complaining about their local areas. Problems like this are why there are some new efforts as getting owners to do their duty to pick up after puppy.
Related: Top 7 Dog Poop Scoopers in 2017
Solutions for Improvement
Lots of people don’t clean up after their dogs because of course they know that it’s not easy to spot their dog’s excrement anyway. That can’t be changed right away, but there have been efforts to shame those owners by spraying the mess a bright colors and leaving it out for when owners return. With the mess a little more obvious, the message just might finally get through that it’s disgusting.
In a few areas too, little flags have been left atop piles of it, sometimes with some funny and critical messages for owners who leave it out. The only issue however is that this is still anonymous and nothing can be proven.
That’s why there have also been a few more serious efforts, like using volunteers to look out for irresponsible owners and then sending the excrement back in a box. This might sound a little extreme, but the problem was reduced by 70%.
Some owners have taken action themselves, leaving signs to warn the errant owners that their name will be posted if they don’t clean up their act. Public interference has done a lot to help, with one woman who didn’t clean up in a subway being known as “Dog Poop Girl” online.
Believe it or not, lots of people are quite prepared to clean up after other people’s dogs too. Surveys by Keep Britain Tidy estimate that 1/3 people do this, or are willing to point it out to an owner who didn’t clean up.
There have also been volunteer efforts to clean up bags or messes as a neighborhood, but some people question this method. If they clean up the messes for others, it doesn’t feel like there are any consequences for the owner.
The “Poover” Vacuum Cleaner
This doggy mess vacuum cleaner has been used in a few areas to clean up messes that even the bravest volunteers don’t want to mess with. It collects the deposits in a vacuum and scoots them away, although it’s only cleaned about 20% of deposits and isn’t one of the more popular options.
Officers in normal clothing with night vision goggles have been known to hang out and hand out fines to owners who try to leave the mess. With their improved capability to see in the dark, they’re able to catch the people along pathways. Pretending or being oblivious is no longer an excuse!
Granted, there have been some criticisms of this method. Of course those officers and mess wardens need to be employed and paid, but there weren’t enough fines to really justify the effort.
This may seem a little extreme, but there have been some calls for a doggy DNA database. Samples could then be traced to owners. Some places have considered this to be too expensive, but there are places that have tried it, sending fines to owners. Areas around the world have done this, with apartment complexes at the top of the list. DNA is swabbed to immediately find the tenant with the problem pooch.
The final solution would inevitably be to ban dogs in general. In beaches especially you might see the signs asking to keep dogs out at certain times, or at parks and fields. Owners that clean up are not only upset, but inconvenienced by this measure too.
In some other areas, there are even harsher restrictions. Sometimes dogs need to be registered, or cannot be walked in certain areas.
Owners themselves have weighed in on this issue, coming up with a few more solutions themselves that are quick and easy. Quite simply: always have little nappy sacks for collection. If you don’t have some, it may seem like a lot of work to drive back with bags, but owners would rather drive back then just leave it there. It shouldn’t take long, and other owners will appreciate your effort too.
Dog fouling is a larger problem than you might imagine if you’re a considerate owner yourself. Whether you own a dog or not, it’s annoying to see doggy deposits near your house, on pathways, or by parks. It’s especially horrible if you step in it. Many dog fouling solutions have been suggested however, with some of them working wonders to reduce the problem and keep the parks and pathways clean.