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That number two hoodoo that you do so well
September 24, 2008 5:48 PM   Subscribe

Dog poop is serious business. When it's not properly disposed of, it can be a significant pollutant, contaminating groundwater and streams. Some cities are taking action, but few are willing, able or ingenious to go as far as Petah Tikva, Israel, which is building its own dog-poop DNA database with the intention of rewarding conscientious pooper-scoopers and punishing scatological scofflaws.
posted by freshwater_pr0n (22 comments total) 2 users marked this as a favorite

 
No worries, I buy dog poop offset credits.
posted by M.C. Lo-Carb! at 5:52 PM on September 24, 2008 [3 favorites]


What if a big dog eats a little dog and then poops it out? Whose DNA does that count against?

(Also: I just "got" "freshwater_pr0n". Damn I'm slow.)
posted by DU at 5:55 PM on September 24, 2008 [1 favorite]


I hear what your saying, however sometimes when I see owners using plastic bags to pick up a tiny dogs poop I do wonder if its worth it. The plastic bag's going to hang around for an awfull lot longer....
posted by CharlotteSarah at 5:55 PM on September 24, 2008


I don't particularly care for dogs and I think pet owners should clean up after them, but is it correct environmental-science-wise to refer to increased bacteria levels from dog poop as "pollution"? That seems odd to me, both since bacteria are themselves living organisms and since I'd expect that higher levels of feces in the environment would be more "natural"... there wouldn't have been any people with pooper scoopers following around wild mammals before widespread human settlement, after all.

What if a big dog eats a little dog and then poops it out?

I've got chunks of guys like you in my stool!
posted by XMLicious at 6:07 PM on September 24, 2008


One time I witnessed an elderly woman slowly bend over to pick up the waste left behind her assistance dog. If there was anyone who could be forgiven for not picking up after their dog, it would be her. Since then I have been fanatical about cleaning up after my dog.

Two tips I would like to share with other dog owners:

1. Don't let your dog off the leash until after he has pooped.
2. Please pick up other dogs' poop. I can't believe how many people will pick up the droppings left behind by only their dog and ignore the older pile of poop next to it.
posted by angrybeaver at 6:30 PM on September 24, 2008


speaking of Peta Tikvah ... good movie btw.
posted by mr.anthony337 at 6:32 PM on September 24, 2008


I'm guilty of this, but only in vacant lots. If my dog shits on the lawn at a park or in some other common-use area, I'll pick it up. Otherwise, I think the plastic baggie is worse than the turd. If there happens to be a trash can on the scene, paper will work, but you can't wrap a big ol' dog turd in paper and take it home. That's just gross.

And what are you supposed to do with turds? Flush them? Some cities have garden waste disposal, but not mine. Seems like the poop is going to find its way into the environment no matter where its laid. Proper sewage treatment seems like the only solution. When I make my millions and build my uber-green home, my guests will by puzzled by the toilet in my back yard.
posted by scope the lobe at 6:37 PM on September 24, 2008


Nobody ever thinks of ending up with that job when they're finishing up their dissertation for a PhD in genetics.
posted by not_on_display at 6:39 PM on September 24, 2008



And what are you supposed to do with turds?

My wife brings them home from walks and deposits them in the Doggie Dooley in the back yard. At risk of being all pepsibrown(?) this thing is pretty slick.

Although we have yet to see how well it handles a winter. meaning, we have to clean it out and not use it till spring, and hope it doesn't collapse into the hole it's in.
posted by Pogo_Fuzzybutt at 7:26 PM on September 24, 2008


What if a big dog eats a little dog and then poops it out?

Or, more likely, what if a big dog eats a little dog's poop and poops THAT out... AND THEN EATS IT AGAIN???

I love dogs.
posted by katillathehun at 7:29 PM on September 24, 2008


...rewarding conscientious pooper-scoopers and punishing scatological scofflaws.

I just wanted to thank you for this, from the bottom of my heart. Thank you.
posted by The Eponymous Pseudonymous Rex at 7:55 PM on September 24, 2008


2. Please pick up other dogs' poop.

How about no?
posted by turgid dahlia at 8:03 PM on September 24, 2008


LET US SOLVE ENVIRONMENTAL POLLUTANTS BY WRAPPING THEM IN PLASTIC
posted by turgid dahlia at 8:05 PM on September 24, 2008 [2 favorites]


We're not convinced our newly installed doggie dooley is actually doing anything, other than accumulating poop.
posted by maxwelton at 8:14 PM on September 24, 2008


I swear to god I'm running for mayor of Redwood City, California on the Dog Poop DNA platform. I am so sick of my lovely Indian Summer walks being spoiled by having to walk past steaming fly-covered piles of shit that I can smell for half a block in either direction, and I can be a vengeful bitch when I need to be.
posted by padraigin at 8:37 PM on September 24, 2008


And what are you supposed to do with turds? Flush them?

You're supposed to have a plan, before you buy some noisy, slobbering, overgrown rat.
posted by pompomtom at 8:41 PM on September 24, 2008


I wonder what future archeologists will make of our obsession with bagging our pet's poo.

The Nacirema appear to have been animal worshipers, believing they would garner great luck thru strange rituals involving the poo of animals and bags that were guaranteed to last 1000 years.
posted by nomisxid at 9:29 PM on September 24, 2008 [1 favorite]


Some forward-thinking persons are harnassing the power of nature's own poop-scoop solution to deal with the issue.

Not that Australia's track record in bio-diversity management is all that stellar...
posted by freya_lamb at 1:43 AM on September 25, 2008


I don't particularly care for dogs and I think pet owners should clean up after them, but is it correct environmental-science-wise to refer to increased bacteria levels from dog poop as "pollution"? That seems odd to me, both since bacteria are themselves living organisms and since I'd expect that higher levels of feces in the environment would be more "natural"... there wouldn't have been any people with pooper scoopers following around wild mammals before widespread human settlement, after all.

From the perspective of a stream ecologist, there are several reasons why your dog pooping in a city park is different from deer pooping in the woods.

1) Native animals either eat plants that grow where they live, or eat things that eat plants that grow where they live. Their waste then fertilizes those plants, and you essentially have a closed circle of carbon and nitrogen cycling.

Your dog's food is based on plants grown on commercial agricultural fields in the midwest, thus your dog's poop is a net import of carbon and nitrogen into the local ecosystem.

2) In a native ecosystem, very little organic matter is transported from the uplands into streams. It takes a very large flood to actually have overland flow of water across a forest floor or a native meadow. Raw animal poop is broken down by detritivores of various stripes long before it is transported to a stream. Only if an animal actually poops in the riparian (streamside) area is it's poop at all likely to wash directly into the stream.

In a city, most of the surface area is impermeable pavement, or things like lawns which are lower permeability than native vegetation. This impermeable surface is then connected by storm sewers directly to the streams. When it rains, dog poop on a lawn or sidewalk is transported within minutes directly into a stream.
posted by hydropsyche at 7:08 AM on September 25, 2008 [4 favorites]


For the plastic bag chrous -- a lot of people use biodegradable bags to pick up the poop. Or re-use bags that are just getting thrown out (old newspaper bags, grocery store bags).
posted by inigo2 at 7:57 AM on September 25, 2008


I use these 100% naturally biodegradable cardboard poop scoops.
posted by ceri richard at 8:01 AM on September 25, 2008


turgid dahlia: How about no?

Sure, that's fine. Do you want me to clean up after your dog too?
posted by angrybeaver at 11:04 AM on September 25, 2008


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