By: Fido B. Good
Are you guilty of leaving your dog’s waste on your neighbor’s lawn because you thought you were providing free fertilizer? Perhaps you don’t scoop the poop because you think it’s downright disgusting! Imagine if all dog owners in Austin didn’t scoop the poop. Our dogs create an average of a half pound of excrement per day. With 120,000 dogs in Austin, that adds up to 60,000 pounds of dog waste – equivalent to nearly five dump truck loads – produced throughout the city every day!
Pet waste is a subject everyone likes to avoid, but it is more than smelly and unsightly — it is a health risk to pets and people, especially children. When it rains, pet waste left on trails, sidewalks and grassy areas can wash into the nearest waterway. Even if you can’t see signs of water near you, the feces wash into stormdrains and then travel to your neighborhood creek or lake untreated. Like human waste, animal waste may contain harmful bacteria and viruses, rendering the water unfit for recreation, or other uses. It takes only one teaspoon of dog feces in a water body the size of an Olympic pool to make the water unsafe for swimming. Pet waste also contains nutrients that will accelerate the growth of nuisance algae in creeks and lakes. So please, scoop the poop — it’s the healthy and neighborly thing to do!
Austin City Code 3-4-6 DEFECATION BY A DOG OR CAT:
“An owner or handler shall promptly remove and sanitarily dispose of feces left on public or private property by a dog or cat being handled by the person, other than property owned by the owner or handler of the dog or cat.”
Potential Fine: Up to $500 in City Parks
Here’s how to help:
1.Bring It! Carry a scooper bag when you walk your dog.
2.Scoop It! Use the baggie like a glove, scoop the poop, invert and seal the bag.
3.Toss It! It belongs in the trash.
4.Place It! Put a “Scoop the Poop” sign in your yard to encourage your neighbors to scoop it up too! (To request a free sign, call 974-2550 or visit www.cityofaustin.org/watershed/wq_materials.htm)
SCOOP THE POOP, AUSTIN – for Cleaner Creeks … Cleaner Streets … Cleaner Feet!
Visit www.ScoopThePoopAustin.org for more information.