The Scoop on Poop

dog (Photo credit: Alex Balan)

Stepping In Dog Poop

Like most folks in NYC, I have had the distinction of stepping in dog poop. It is not pleasant, especially when you consider that this has happened to me more than once and often while I am actually picking up after my own dogs - 3 to be exact.  NYC Law dictates that dog owners must pick up after their pets or risk incurring a $250 fine. Dog poop should not be picked up though, simply because there is the potential for a fine or because it is a nuisance to those who step in it.  

Drinking Doggy Doo

There are farther reaching reasons for picking up after your dog. Namely, doo-doo in our drinking water. When humans poop, it is safe to assume that most are likely using a toilet, so that waste is being directed to sewage treatment plants that are specifically designed to treat the water and neutralize bad bacteria.  Okay, so with respect to doggy doo, we would not be drinking the actual feces but potentially the bacteria that it contains which can be detrimental to our drinking water and those who are actually drinking it - you and me. According to the EPA dog poop is as toxic to the environment as an oil or chemical spill, due in large part to the concentration of dogs in urban areas and therefore the concentration of dog poop in these areas.  If dog poop is not picked up from a sidewalk, or even an urban "green space" it is likely being washed down into water systems - either our drinking water or even to our beaches - not equipped to filter the doggy doo.

As this infographic - courtesy of PoopBuddy - shows, doggy poop that is not picked up takes a less-than-desirable path and, while gross, more importantly, could potentially have devastating consequences.

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