Who Are These People Who Don’t Pick Up Their Dog’s Poop?

Yes, Yes I did take an actual photo of abandoned dog poop for this post.

Yes, Yes I did take an actual photo of abandoned dog poop for this post.

I don’t know who these people are. I know they exist because of the abandoned dog poop piles I see. I find abandoned dog poop piles more often in the City than I do in the woods…and a lot of times sitting in the middle of the sidewalk.

Who ARE these people? I never see them myself.

What do these people tell themselves to make leaving dog poop on the ground ok? Do they live in a vacuum so they don’t know it is rude or a problem for water quality? Do they not know it contaminates stream and lake water and can make people sick? Do they know and just not care? What about the person who lets their dog poop in someone else’s yard and leaves it? What are they thinking?

I think these are the reasons people don’t pick up their dog poop:

  1. They think dog poop is natural. It is not (especially in the quantities that are generated by our pets) and harms the environment and threatens public health
  2. They think that picking up dog poop is gross
  3. They forgot a bag
  4. They don’t want to carry it with them
  5. It’s not a law, or they don’t know it is a law (because it is in some places), so they think they don’t have to or it’s not that important
  6. They are completely self-absorbed and think they are the only people on the planet (kidding…kind of. Ha, ha)

The conversation, Why Don’t People Pick Up Their Dog’s Poop!!, on Dogster is very enlightening and gives you a glimpse into what people on both sides of the fence are thinking.

So how do we reach these people? Let’s think of some ideas.

Let’s say you DID see the person start to walk away from their dog’s poop.

Albeit a bit passive-agressive, I have found it effective to suddenly appear with a poop bag and state something like “man, I know what is is like to forget my poop bags at home. I had someone save me once so I want to pay it forward.”

You could also take a more confrontational, educational approach. No one likes to be told they are wrong so this is a touchy one. You could approach them and “nicely” let them know that they are making a bad name for other dog owners or educate them on the law or the health/environmental impact.

If the offender is someone who is letting their dog poop in your yard and leaving it, there are several ways I have seen people deal with this.

Poop sign 1

On the more subtle end of the scale, I have seen people post signs in their yard that say “no pooping” or “Please pick up after your pet”. If you see the person doing it, you can ask them to please pick up the dog poop.

There are a couple off little more obvious things you could do too. You could place flags on each pile of poop with a message on them like “my neighbor left this in my yard”. I also think it is a great idea to get their address (say, if you know which house they live it…and, yes, I think it is ok to subtly stalk them to find this out) and mail them a box of poop bags. I think sending them a PoopBuddy package would be great for this. It is sending them a message to pick up their dog’s poop but because they bags are fun and colorful it makes the gesture a little more lighthearted.


I don’t condone this one but I have heard of people scooping up a bunch of dog poop and placing it in the middle the offender’s porch.

But what about all of those people who you don’t see leave dog poop on the ground? How do we reach these people? Please share your ideas in the comments below.



  1. says

    Great ideas! I saw a neighbor digging through another neighbors recycling bin and thought it was very odd until I saw her start to use what she had gotten out to bend down and clean-up. I immediately offered her a bag and also told her she was awesome. We became fast friends. While sitting in the grass at a pocket park last week, I offered a man who seemed to be walking away from his dogs pile and he snapped “I have one.” He did return after strolling the park to clean it up, glaring at me as he did. It’s funny how offers can go both ways but the result’s the same and that’s what matters!
    Bethany recently posted…Excuse Me, Miss, We Have Had Some Complaints About the SmellMy Profile

    • Jessica Rhae says

      I am glad you spoke up. I know it is not easy. I “know” by imagining though because, as I said, I have never SEEN anyone leave poop before. I wish that I would just once but I bet I won’t be as kind to that person as I should. They will get the brunt of years of pent-up frustration. Ha, ha.

      My friend has seen people try to leave their dog’s poo in front of her house and she yells at them.

      • Candace Mulvey says

        Very good ideas! I agree with all of them. I am a rabid picker-upper! I always take 2 bags just in case. Now, how about CATS! Weeding my garden and get a handful of stinky cat poop is NASTY!! Cat owners think absolutely nothing about their pet leaving “presents” for us to find.

  2. says

    Ahh I really like that passive-aggressive approach lol… One of our clients once had the vet I worked with write a letter about giardia and picking up poop to the head people at her apartment complex. Her dog was I’m having a tough time with the giardia. I’m not sure exactly what they did with the letter… pass it out?
    Ann Paws recently posted…Carry Your Dog’s Poop in Style with the Do-G-BagMy Profile

    • Jessica Rhae says

      Well, I hope the apartment complex listened. Maybe the passed the flier out or tightened their enforcement.

      Education does often work with businesses…especially if you site an ordinance they are/would be in violation of. I found that the education was not as effective with individuals.

  3. says

    Well, Mom doesn’t take us out in public that often but when she does, the bag goes along too.

    We’re a pack of 10 and have our own little backyard within our big backyard where we can leave our poop. Mom is out there every day…two times a day to scoop the poop. We thought we were helping to fertilize the grass, butt Mom said she likes to get outside in the sunshine and poop scooping gives her something to do…..{sigh}
    Amber DaWeenie recently posted…BUTT IT’S B AND W SUN-DAY!My Profile

    • Jessica Rhae says

      With 10 dogs I am not sure I would go out in public with them often either! :)

      Chester and Gretel poo in our back yard. My hubby and I like to eat outside when the weather is nice. We keep the poop cleaned up so we don’t have to smell it or see it (I mean, environmental reasons too but that is our big reminder to do it)).

    • Jessica Rhae says

      Hmmm…sounds like you tried a lot of things. It is a shame that none of it worked. If he was leaving it on a sidewalk you could maybe contact the City if he was violating and ordinance. Because he was leaving it on your personal property they probably couldn’t do much though. If there WERE repercussions for these people I am sure they would be less likely to do it.

    • Cortney says

      It’s one thing to have a one-time emergency at 4am and not have a bag, but to consistently do it, after specifically being told to stop, well, pardon my french but that really takes a pair of “you know whats!!” Since your neighbor has no scruples, and the polite approach didn’t work, I would start thinking like your neighbor. I would put out a motion sensing camera that would flash and take a photo whenever someone entered my yard, like they use in the woods to survey nocturnal animals. Next to it I’d probably put up a note that says this is their ONE AND ONLY warning, the next time I’ll print the photo and distribute it to everyone in the neighborhood! I don’t know if it’s legal, but if you “advise” the neighbor in advance, I’m guessing you’re safe. It might be wrong, but I’m guessing it will be very effective!

  4. says

    Too funny that you mentioned PoopBuddy because we are featuring them today on Dakota’s blog for the second time (and we are having a give-away!) Hoping that people will enter to win these great bags!
    I live in an apt/condo complex and I have a neighbor who I ALWAYS see taking her dog out (that lives here part time) and she NEVER, EVER, EVER picks up her poop. There are 3 other dogs in the building and I am certain that her mind-set is that someone else will pick it up for her, which WE always do, because no way would we leave it laying there!
    Caren Gittleman recently posted…PoopBuddy! “Eco Chic” and Vibrant Poop Bags! Perfect for the Scoop That Poop” Campaign! Give-Away!My Profile

    • Jessica Rhae says

      I don’t understand people who think that way. Perhaps she is thinking that SHE doesn’t think it is a problem and if someone else has a problem with it they can just pick it up themselves. Sheesh.

      I saw your PoopBuddy giveaway. I am not entering because I am drowning in poop bags but I did share the giveaway on YDWWYW and on a twitter profile I manage for an animal rescue.

  5. says

    I’ll admit that I used to think that it was natural and not a big deal. We would go on trails and our dogs would poop off the trails in the tall grass. I overheard someone complaining about not being able to walk without stepping in poo and I felt terrible. There are so many people where I live who have the same attitude and since so many people let their dogs off leash, they can say “I don’t know where it is,” or “I tried to find it, but couldn’t.” I’ve started picking up our dogs’ poo, because I do get the frustration of trying to clean your shoes before getting in your car.

    I hope that people seeing me picking up poo will follow my lead. I always carry plenty of bags with me to hand out just in case someone forgets to bring one.
    Kimberly Gauthier recently posted…PetSmart Encourages Us to Create an Emergency Pet First Aid KitMy Profile

    • Jessica Rhae says

      Oooohhhh…that makes me doubly mad! On almost all hiking trails in Washington, leashes are required. Some people think it doesn’t apply to them and they ignore it (off leash dogs are an entirely different rant!). THEN they claim they can’t pick up their dog’s poop because they did it off trail and they can’t find it. That is part of the reason your dog is supposed to be leashed people!! Don’t disobey a law so you can fiend helplessness in regard to another law. Sheesh.

      • says

        I get where everyone is coming from, but that doesn’t make it right. It’s embarrassing that I was so inconsiderate when it comes to our dogs. They are back on the leash and I have a pocket full of poo bags. What’s really sad is how many times strangers have thanked me for having our dogs on leash and picking up after them – I didn’t realize it was such a problem (the poo isn’t on the trail), but it obviously when so many people notice when someone is doing the right thing.
        Kimberly Gauthier recently posted…Set Your DVR! Don’t Miss Kickass K9 on TLC’s Boston Underdogs, Aug 12My Profile

        • Jessica Rhae says

          Thanks for the insight about the “thanking”. I sometimes thank people for having their dogs on leash when we are out hiking but perhaps I should do it more. I haven’t ever thanked anyone for picking up their poop but I am usually not close enough to say something. Imagine me yelling a couple of hundred feet to someone? Ha, ha. I am just the kind of nut to do it though :) Maybe I should look for opportunities to thank someone without yelling :)

    • Jessica Rhae says

      I read this article yesterday. I like that it is working and I think it’s a genius idea. I do wonder how they get these people’s addresses though. Government stalking much? Ha, ha. I figure they must follow these people to their car and get their address from their license plate.

  6. says

    Some places are taking the DNA of the dogs in the vicinity so they can match it with any poop they find. This seems to work well in closed environments like apartment complexes. I think the idea that you could have your dog’s poops identified should be enough to drive home the point. I would imagine that an actual test might be quite expensive.
    jan recently posted…Dogs, humans and garbage…a timeless relationshipMy Profile

    • Jessica Rhae says

      I am aware of that technique and it is working at apartment complexes. I think Florida was the first place I saw that pop up. I am not sure how expensive it is. Perhaps the apartment charges a higher pet fee to cover some of those costs? I bet after the initial test they don’t need many follow-ups. The fear factor probably encourages people to pick it up…as you said :)

  7. says

    I loved your idea of handing someone a bag. Mostly where we are people pick up their poop. Especially if we are in a campground. A friend of ousr did the sign thing once at a rendezvous when he found a pile in front of his camp. Sadly, no one claimed it and picked it up. He had to do that and he doesn’t even have a dog.
    Roxy the traveling dog recently posted…Monday mischief and a new houseMy Profile

    • Jessica Rhae says

      That is the worst…when non dog owners have to pick up after a lazy dog owner. It makes a bad name for all of us. I don’t blame the people for being extra irritated if they have to do that. I would have picked it up for him if I had been there :)

  8. says

    I don’t know who those people are either, but I can tell you from the poop piles around my neighborhood…they are big dog owners, because there are always big dog piles left behind. It’s just gross! We always pick up the poop…our neighbor even just went out and bought the same cute dispenser we have for our bags. Now if I could just get everyone else to do the same!
    Oz the Terrier recently posted…For Dog’s Sake, Scoop That PoopMy Profile

    • Jessica Rhae says

      I CAN say I am glad I own small dogs because the poop is smaller. I classify them as one-handed or two-handed dogs :) I do think that making it “fun”, or less unpleasant, helps by using cute poop bags or dispensers.

        • Jessica Rhae says

          Does Sugar have another one scheduled? We could come up with something. Maybe a Q&A where I interview you about bugs and you interview me about how poop hurts water quality?

        • says

          I collect poop bag holders, so I have a different one on each leash. BOL!! I usually have pink bags, but sometimes a different color if I run out of pink, or want to match an outfit. BOL! I say I always pick it up, but – there was one time I didn’t pick it up. Pep just had to make her deposit in the middle of a fire ant hill. By the time I brushed the ants off her legs, the little poop was a swarming mass of fire ants. I apologized to the property owner and asked if it was ok that I not pick up that once. She understood and didn’t blame me at all. She said she wouldn’t expect anyone to pick up in a fire ant hill. She could see I had bags and normally would have picked it up. She was more concerned that I was able to get all of the ants off of Pepper. It rained that evening, so I think the ants and rain took care of that one poop. I would think if anyone had stepped in that exact spot, they would have had much worse on their minds than poop. Now, I am curious if any of you have ever picked up poop covered in fire ants?
          PepperPom recently posted…Dynamo Dog Functional Treats from Cloud Star – Pet Product ReviewMy Profile

  9. says

    Mom wanted to print out a copy of our local ordinance which says it’s a class 4 misdemeanor if you don’t pick up your poop, laminate it, and post it on a sign in the yard. Dad thought that was “a little much”. Maybe just leave a copy of the ordinance on the person’s door?

    • Jessica Rhae says

      I would think printing the ordinance, laminating it and posting it in a public place would be the “lesser” of targeting the person by leaving it on their door. If you post it in a general area they could easily ignore it and if you post it to their door they might get mad and not pick up poop out of defiance. There is no best option. If it were me, I would start by posting the ordinance in a public place.

  10. says

    I love the little signs on the poo. Luckily our yard is fenced and we don’t have many dogs around. We do live near an open space and one of our neighbors walks his dogs there every morning and the poop there every morning — they’ve left a trail of poo, spaced 1-24 inches apart along this one section – it’s so gross. I haven’t had the nerve to say anything cause I haven’t actually seen them do it, but I know it’s them…thanks for the ideas,
    SlimDoggy recently posted…Maggie Makes up for her MischiefMy Profile

  11. says

    I have no clue how to reach them, but I can’t stand people who don’t clean up. Our beautiful dog friendly and off leash beach is getting nasty because scumbags can’t clean up Rover’s mess. Last time we were at the beach I had someone thank me for cleaning up Nola’s poop. That was nice.
    Dachshund Nola and Her Mom recently posted…Hard as NailsMy Profile

    • Jessica Rhae says

      I see people at the beach around here kick some sand over their dog’s poop. Uhhh…not helping because it washes into the water when the tide comes in and kits making sand castles could accidentally put their hand it it.

  12. says

    Really interesting subject!

    For the people that don’t pick up after their dogs – I’m not sure there is anything we can do to force them into it. They rank right down there with the people that flick cigarette butts or garbage out of their windows while driving or while walking/hiking along. The world is their toilet/garbage can/ash tray, etc.
    Blueberry’s human recently posted…Desert StrollMy Profile

    • Jessica Rhae says

      Well, education is slowly being effective I think. “Forcing” people doesn’t generally work but if the problem is bad enough there may be no alternative. Many places have laws about picking up poop but they are seldom enforced. Maybe someday we will see more of that.

      I agree the other things are irritating too…and, yes, they are probably a lot of the same people.

  13. GizmoGeodog says

    I’m laughing here cause you reminded me of an old Halloween prank (my mother taught me this one…she used to do it as a kid in Brooklyn) … you put the poop in a brown paper bag, place it on the offender’s porch and light it on fire…pretty sure if you tried that now you’d get arrested…I take the “oh gosh, did you forget a bag…here I’ve got an extra one” approach and try to keep smiling and not grit my teeth…Sometimes it works, others it doesn’t…
    GizmoGeodog recently posted…All the Poop That’s Fit to ScoopMy Profile

    • Jessica Rhae says

      Oh, I have heard of that before…but figured it might get me in trouble if I tired it :) I am not sure what I will say if I ever catch anyone. I know what I would IMAGINE I would say but although I am opinionated, I like to give people the benefit of the doubt and lean toward the non-confrontational. I would offer them bag for sure though. If they refused it then I would probably get huffy, pick it up myself in front of them while grumbling about how they are being irresponsible and giving us dog owners a bad name.

  14. Jodi, Kolchak & Felix says

    For me, the absolute WORST part is carrying it around. Seriously, I don’t care how cute the plastic bag is, it’s still a bag full of steamer and I want no part in it. Still, I’m a responsible dog owner, so I do it, but I can’t rave enough about our leash bag (I shared it on our Fetch Friday post: http://kolchakpuggle.com/2013/08/fetch-friday-robots-in-disguise-edition.html)

    It’s lined and washable, so after I pick up, I can knot the plastic bag and hide it safely away in this stylish looking one, which I hang off my leash with a caribiner (or now, off my stylish stroller, with the built in fanny pack and cup holder.)

    My mom’s apartment walks the line between being obnoxious and considerate about the poop. Yes, there are signs every 20 feet or so, but there’s aso a bag dispenser and a small discrete trash can every 20 feet or so too – no excuses! You were asked nicely, had a bag and a place to get rid of it. If you don’t pick up at that point, you’re just a jerk!
    Jodi, Kolchak & Felix recently posted…They See Me Rollin’, They Hatin’My Profile

    • Jessica Rhae says

      I wouldn’t say I HATE carrying it around but it’s certainly not the fun part of dog ownership. As for the apartment, sometimes I takes a hammer to get the point across :)

  15. says

    I know! It seems like you can never catch them in the act! Back some years ago, when we lived in an apartment… there were always these giant piles of poop out in the outer area where most folks walked their dogs. I never could catch who was leaving these behind! It really chapped my hide because a) our apartment complex had a 25 lb weight limit for pets and believe me, these poops were not coming out of a 25 lb dog… and b) there were dumpsters all over, so it was really easy to pick up your dog’s poop and toss it right into a dumpster without even having to carry it very far. There was no excuse for these to be left behind… and yet, there they always were… to be disgustingly mowed over my the mowing crew. Picking up someone else’s stray poo here and there is one thing, but there was no way I was picking up EVERY single poo from someone else’s large dog.
    Living in a house, my two do most of their business in the backyard, and I pick it up at least once a day, sometimes twice. They don’t go while on walks very often, and we pick it up when they do. Fortunately, we don’t see too many abandoned poops either. If I caught someone blatantly leaving one behind, I don’t know exactly what I’d say. I’d be super annoyed and want to say something sharp, but I also don’t like to initiate confrontation. I’d probably pull a passive-aggressive move.
    Pam recently posted…Be Responsible – Scoop That Poop!My Profile

    • Jessica Rhae says

      We rent and our landlord pays for someone to mow the lawn. I admit that sometimes I haven’t been the best at picking up dog poo so I have to rush out in my pajamas before they mow :) They always appreciate my effort even if I miss a few (they are in a hurry to get in and out so they don’t wait long). They said that lots of people leave dog poop in their back yard and they have to stick their hand in the bag of grass clippings and poo…which is gross. I feel bad for them.
      Jessica Rhae recently posted…Who Are These People Who Don’t Pick Up Their Dog’s Poop?My Profile

  16. says

    We noticed that a lot of people aren’t aware of the dangers of leaving it behind. Spreading awareness and starting the conversation is a HUGE part of getting people to scoop the poop. So thanks for spreading the word! Also, having some cute bags to show off works as a great incentive 😉

    -Carina and the PoopBuddies

  17. says

    Luckily our yard is fenced so we don’t have to worry about other dogs pooping in our yard, but our neighbors never pick up after their two labradors. They just mow right over it, gross. We don’t know what to do, it is their yard but the dogs like to go along the fence line and it stinks when we are mowing our lawn.
    This has been a great topic for discussion today.
    Linda and the PugRanch Kids
    Bailey, Hazel & Greta
    Idaho PugRanch recently posted…Be a Responsible Dog OwnerMy Profile

  18. Tammy says

    I’ll admit – I was an offender last weekend. I was out running with my dog, and used 2 poo bags, but he went a 3rd time :( it was Sunday so I thought about stealing a newspaper bag off of a porch, but it was windy & I was afraid the paper would blow away. So I left it. :( I guess I should buy one of those dispenser things to clip on his leash for our long runs so I don’t get caught short-bagged again.

    • Jessica Rhae says

      I will admit I have been caught without a bag once or twice. Luckily, I was walking with friends when I did and they had bags for me. If I don’t carry a roll of bags with me (if I am running or traveling light), I tie 4 bags on the handle of the leash – 2 for each dog even though it is very rare that they would both go twice.
      Jessica Rhae recently posted…Who Are These People Who Don’t Pick Up Their Dog’s Poop?My Profile

    • Jessica Rhae says

      I actually joked about starting a “poop shaming” Facebook page where people could post picture of abandoned poop they found with details about where it was found…or of people walking away from it. Good for you Mom for speaking up to the person at the dog park.

  19. says

    We did read on the paper about someone piling poops on a neighbor’s door. One article was poop were mailed. Yes who are these dog owners that just don’t pick up? They should not own a dog if they can’t pick it up. Lots of Golden Thanks for joining our Scoop That Poop campaign blog hop. Lots of Golden Woofs, Sugar
    SUGAR: Golden Woofs recently posted…Sugar, The Fifth Paw Dog Model AdMy Profile

  20. Monica says

    i live in the city in an apartment. surrounding my apartment is all concrete. lots of dog owners on my block, and i have seen more than one owner let their dog poop right on the curb. if we dont see it, especially at night, since it is off-street parking…we step on it. it is sooo frustrating. one gal didnt have either of her dogs on leashes yesterday, and let her little dog poop right outside my car as my daughter and i were sitting in the front seat talking! people who live in the city near me dont seem to have manners…they argue outside, play music loud, hang out on their porches all times of night….which makes telling them about the poop annoying…because i am not out to make all my neighbors mad. plus i think they will know its me who put up the ordinance sign, reported them, etc.

  21. zee zee says

    So you think throwing away poop in a landfill tied up in little plastic baggies where it will also get into our water, etc is BETTER than letting it go au natural?! That’s just insane. Technically you are not supposed to dispose of feces in the trash, this also includes throwing away baby diapers, you’re supposed to flush the feces. So maybe we should all be teaching our pups to use the toilet? 😉

    So should people be walking around behind horses, squirrels, random other animals picking up their poop? no.

    It’s a sad world where people do not realize that it is a natural fertilizer and as long as it is out of the way of foot traffic that it is FINE!

    • Jessica Rhae says

      Well, if you took the time to read my previous blog posts (you can find them by tying “dog poop” in the search bar on the home page) about this issue, you would know that I am not sure some “nut”. I have been a water quality specialist working with pollution of our lakes and streams for 10 years. I have worked with both the Environmental Protection Agency and the Washington State Department of Ecology – both of which who agree that although not perfect, yes, picking up dog waste and placing it in the trash is the best solution. Placing pet waste in the trash in not illegal.

      I have written blog posts to address the concerns you have expressed. I don’t wish to re-write them here. I will just say that 1) dog poop contains pathogens and bacteria that do not exist in horse, squirrel, etc poop. These pathogens and bacteria can make water unsafe for humans to swim in or drink; 2) Most municipal treatment plants are not equipped to handle a significant volume of pet waste. They have a hard enough time keeping up with all of the human waste produced; and 3) It is a sad world where people don’t obey laws that are for the betterment of the human good and the environment.

      Thank you for expressing your opinion.
      Jessica Rhae recently posted…One Way to Clean Your Dog’s Teeth Without BrushingMy Profile

  22. says

    Recipe for an open face poop sandwich

    Take an old plate and put a piece of bread on it. Now pile a genrerous pile of poop,perhaps a pickle and chips as well on the side.Neatly fold a napkin and put a fok on it and place a knife and spoon on the other side. The visual really sticks in dog ownwers minds.

  23. says

    Fun Gurerrila tactics to get dog owners out of the woods!

    Find a path that they use. This is an old trappers trick to route traffic called “crowding”.
    Place a branch on one side of the path to direct traffic where you want them to go{they won’t walk over it, they walk around it}. Place a pile of poop in the middle of the small area you have made. sprinkle some pine needles or other forrest material to camoflage it. This is really successful! Also try using burrs esp. “devils pitch” fork found near streams. Lay them where they will catch socks and pants.Really irritating and time consuming to remove .
    Try putting bacon fat or chicken fat and or a dog biscut in the poop.Now spot will eat the poop and clean up after himself and may teach other dogs!
    Another fun thing to do is buy some fox urine {you ain’t lived ’till you haven’t smelled it! }
    Mix it with a product calle “turbo” a solution used in agriculture to keep insecticides on fruit.
    Spray this in the underside of the car in the drivers wheel well.this smell won’t go away for a long time and everytime it rains it comes back.Also put it down where the windshield wipers go in the middle .this will go down into the vent and will stay forever every time they open the vent.
    These assinine Narcissists are masters of the obtuse and have no business owning a dog.
    Being polite and non confrotational does not work! Don’t speak to you offending neighbors as in my experience it only creates animosity. Call animal control they took care of my in yard problems as I was lucky enough to see the dog.
    If you have a BB gun pop spot on the bum.It stings , but won’t break the skin and adverse therapy really works without hurting the dog.The dog is not at fault ,just the owner.

  24. Fern says

    The soccer team I coached played at a park across from a row of houses. Before each game I would place orange cones next to dog piles to mark where they were and then pick them up to keep the kids from getting it on their cleats. Most days I was picking up 7-10 piles, Rottweiler sized. The residents could see me doing this, but apparently the guilty ones ignored my efforts because the volume never seemed to diminish. I don’t understand how a person can just leave it to let someone else deal with their dog’s poop, but then rudeness is everywhere unfortunately.

    • Jessica Rhae says

      Good for you but bad on them. Unfortunately, I agree that rudeness and the expectation that people will clean up your mess (literally and figuratively) is more commonplace than it should be.
      Jessica Rhae recently posted…Win a $175 Amazon Gift Card!My Profile

  25. says

    I have done the “Oh here – I know … I hate when I forget or run out of bags too” thing more than once. I have also left poop bags in a cute carrier (I had won it at a raffle and was not using it) all wrapped up as a gift during the Holidays for a neighbour who had two MADSSIVE dogs that he let poop all over the front of the apartment complex. In fact because of him, that complex changed their policy and no more pets were allowed. *sigh* He moved out – but … we had to as well. It worked out for us and we found our amazing condo but still … I could have screamed in frustration.

    I have also done what I call “penance pick-ups”. I will sometimes pick up a poop someone has left behind … as penance for the 2-3 times a year I run out of bags or “don’t see it” (My guy is 3.5 pounds and doesn’t eat dog food so his poops are really small and can get lost … say … under leaves for example).

    It drives me crazy … I am not nearly as nice as most – I’ve yelled a few times too when the person isn’t big enough to beat me to a pulp. Not that I recommend it – it’s likely not that effective. But Grrrrrrrrr…… great post.

    Side travel note: In the countries with the most lax and hugely dog friendly environments (Greece and Tuscany come to my mind) I never … ever… saw a stray poop. Odd right? You’d think the more dogs the more poop but — nope.

    • Jessica Rhae says

      That is interesting about Greece and Tuscany in regard to dog poop. I swear that some of the difference is because some people resist being told what to do in the places where picking up poo is law. Also, if the environment is SO dog friendly that they are everywhere and a accepted part of life, people are more conscious of the impact they are having.

      While I have wanted to yell at several people about dog poop, I never have…I just yell inside. I haven’t had the “pleasure” of seeing an offender in the real world – just piles of poop with no one in sight. However, I have encountered a few resistors online. I try to educate but am too chicken-sh*t to yell at them through my keyboard :)
      Jessica Rhae recently posted…10 Holiday Gifts for Active DogsMy Profile

  26. Darren says

    Dogs were pooping all over this country way before we ever got here. We dont clean up because it is not necessary. We dont clean up out of spite it just is not necessary. For the record I dont care if another dog poops on my lawn either. It is natural.

    • Jessica Rhae says

      I would agree with you Darren if it were “before we got here” or even 1,000 years ago. Now so many dogs are located in one limited area, and we have destroyed the soils natural structure with development, that nature can no longer handle the load of poop being “dumped on it”. I appreciate you taking the time to voice your opinion but as a water quality specialist with 6 years of college on the subject, and 10 years working in the field, I can 100% tell you that not cleaning up pet waste leads to water and soil contaminated with bacteria that can (and does) make humans sick.
      Jessica Rhae recently posted…Is Your Dog an Adventurer? There’s a Twitter Chat for ThatMy Profile

  27. says

    These people know what they are doing,, they take their dog outside to use the poop waste ,, pick uo behind your dog, nobody should have to tell them that.. they know what they are doing..i saw one lady watch her dog poop and then went in the streetand got a stick and came back and put it over the poop..WTF,, all that she could have picked up her dog poop.. and they never let their dog poop by their own door..they know exactly what they are doing.. carru a damn bag and pick up behind your damn dog!

  28. says

    If you like dog poop so much you can follow my dog around and eat it! I bet you’re the kind of person who hangs out at public restrooms inspecting bowls to see if they need to be scrubbed, then inspecting the anuses of patrons to make sure they are wiped to your standards.

    Any dog turds that you find you can have them. I don’t know what you obsession with touching them is, but I don’t care what you do with them. I leave my dog’s turds where they fall because that is the way of nature!

    • Jessica Rhae says

      While you get points for probably the most creative, random, insulting comment on my blog yet, you are misinformed. My “obsession” stems from a degree in environmental science and 10 years working in the environmental protection and water quality fields. I am curious what your credentials are?

      While a dog pooping is a natural process, the number of domesticated dogs pooping on the planet today is far more than our degraded environment can handle naturally. Pet waste contains bacteria which often makes its way into water (including groundwater) that humans drink and swim in and can make them sick. It may look like it disappears but it really just breaks into 100 tiny poop piles which wash away – not “naturally treated” buy the soil. A simple internet search will reveal hundreds of articles and websites about this issue.

      I will admit that the problem and risk is much less if you live in the country…as long as your one or two dogs are pooping more than 300 feet from any waterbody. However, in developed urban areas, that pet waste washes directly into the nearest stormwater system, and ultimately lake, river or ocean, with the next rain. It is a HUGE problem. Dozens of beaches are closed every year due to fecal coliform and ecoli contamination. People who don’t pick up their pet’s waste are directly contributing to that problem.
      Jessica Rhae recently posted…A Great #PawNatural Raw Dog Food for AdventuringMy Profile

  29. Tired of Suburban Idiots! says

    I used to be a dog person….USED to be.

    I live in a community of row houses. All I have in this world is a tiny – and I mean tiny – plot of frontage and a driveway. I have no patience for this crap (no pun)…and I’m certainly not polite when I “deal” with it. I’m not going to be “nice.” In my mind? It should be COMMON SENSE for someone to pick up after their dog, especially when it dumps on other people’s property! I don’t pop a squat on your driveway – why would you think it acceptable for your beast to defecate on mine?

    Lucky for me, I have motion-censored camera’s around my home…so I know exactly who these brain-dead morons are….and YES, that poop? The clumps you found shoved in your mailbox on top of your bills?? Yep – that was me returning what your dog lost.

    Dog owners are about the most self-centered breed around. I have one neighbor who has two dogs. I can’t understand why….as he leaves them outside all day and all night….barking forever…..2 p.m. or 2 a.m. Doesn’t matter to him – but I sure have to listen to it. Why bother adopting the animals?!
    Another guy across the street hasn’t heard of that nifty new invention we call A LEASH. My son takes his scooter out on the sidewalk, only to be chased down by this mongrel…which lead to a severe wipe-out on the pavement and stiches!

    IT AIN’T ROCKET SCIENCE!! If your dog shits in the middle of another person’s driveway, they won’t be happy about it…in fact, they may even call animal control and/or lay chemicals that may or may not harm your animal. After all, why should I care when you have zero respect for me?!

    If you’re not going to take care of your responsibility appropriately, adopt a cat!

    • Jessica Rhae says

      Yikes. I don’t blame you. That would turn me off too! Owning dogs myself exposes me to all different kinds of “actions” of dog owners and, yes, not all of them are pleasant. If I didn’t own a dog I might be jaded too. Unfortunately, I have been on the other side a few times before and got blasted by people who didn’t like dogs just because of bad past experiences with other dog owners :( Those people are not making my life any easier.
      Jessica Rhae recently posted…Hiking Misery at Dog Friendly Smith Rock State ParkMy Profile

  30. Barbara K says

    Interesting “pile” of input on dog pooping! I always carry poop bags and will p/u poop from other dogs. So let me just say this about people who are oblivious to common courtesy and think it’s “nature’s way”…you can’t fix stupid!

    There used to be a dog owner in the n’hood whose dog always got loose and pooped all over everyone’s yards. We all knew who he was. One day I’d had enough so picked up his dog’s poop and the piles the dog had left in the n’bors’ yards and left it hanging from his doorknob in a large plastic bag. You can’t fix stupid!

    Another n’bor moved in a couple years ago, the yard was not fenced and was on the edge of a very long ravine that is home to a wide variety of wild critters. Trying to be helpful, I suggested he put in a long-line or a kennel run so the dog, a Mini Schnauzer, couldn’t get down in the ravine. He scoffed…”oh he goes down there all the time.” Well one night he let the dog out about 10 p.m. for the last poop & pee of the day and never saw the dog again! So the poor dog paid the price for his stupidity. He then got another Mini Schnauzer and continues to turn the dog loose to pepper the n’bors’ yards with his pee & poop! I call the Animal Control Officers whenever I see the dog loose in the n’hood (there’s a leash law in our town)! Other n’bors are afraid of retribution so will not call and complain. When I find a pile of his dog’s poop in my yard, I take it down in a baggie and leave it in his driveway.

    I foster a lot of dogs and have plenty of poop to p/u without having to p/u after that inconsiderate stupid turkey’s dog!

    If I’m out walking and see someone with their dog pooping, I ask them if they need a poop bag…if it’s obvious they do not intend to pick up after their dog.

  31. Barbara K says

    Oh one more thing. I bought a motion-detecting sprinkler…well not really a sprinkler…it works like the oscillating sprinklers. It’s battery operated and you can adjust the width and distance it sprays! Keeps the deer (from the ravine) from eating the buds off my plants in the front garden. Needless to say the Min Schnauzer no longer poops in my front garden!

  32. chris says

    I have seen people walk their dog past my yard. There is this one lady who is really rude and she thinks she owns/controls the neighborhood whole walking her poodle!

    I tell you that dog has pooped on my front lawn more than I can count. She don’t care about sign’s or you talking nicely to her to pick it up. First of all she is a Senior Citizen and she is old and cranky! She just waves/brushes you off like your wasting her time and she walks away ignoring you with the dog poop on your lawn for you to pick up.

    I found out where she lives so every time her dog poops on my lawn I throw it back on her lawn/porch or whoever it lands…

    Why should I clean up after her dog! She is the owner of the dog not me….

  33. Daniel says

    I have 3 dogs and also a dogpoop complex..I HAVE to go pick it up!! I’ve had a problem with new neighbors who’s giant dog ‘got out’ and came and pooped a 7 LB turd on MY yard!?? I have wiener dogs, (little turds) So I took my shovel and carried it back to their house and put it on their front step!!

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