Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Ask Lola: Considerate Dogwalker Eco-friendly Doggy Pick Up Solutions To Poop-lution

Dear Lola: My family and I are preparing for a fun filled weekend on the hiking trails with our adventure dog Monty. Are their any eco-friendly options out there to pick up that squishy stuff?


Dear CONSIDERATE DOGWALKER: Thanks for doing your part to keep the doggy rompland's and hiking trails clean. I would like to officially give you & Monty a big paw on the back for picking up after those potty breaks. Like many dogs, a walk to the park, around the neighborhood and on the trail makes my day, but sometimes nature calls (no, not the howling of the wild). When you got to go, you got to go. Whether you are hiking, playing fetch at the park, or going for a stroll around the neighborhood with Monty. It is always important to bring poop bags along for the ride on each fun filled adventure with your loyal buddy.

Here is some poop for thought… Did you know that American dogs and cats produce 10 million tons of waste a year? While over 40 million tons of this waste is not collected. So where does all that “poop-lution” go? Well, that’s a great question, it either winds up in a landfill where it is mummified in a plastic bag. Take my bark for it this is something you don’t want to see on display at the Metropolitan Museum of Fine Arts. Or perhaps it’s sits in your yard, at the park or on the sidewalks waiting to be washed away by the next rainstorm into our sewers and waterways. It is said that 20-30% of all waterway pollution is due to dog waste. Wow that’s a lot of poo for thought!

Reality is that dog pile pickup is a dirty job that all pet owners must face, and sadly smell. In the bad old days, you walked away leaving a smelly reminder of Fido, but now a days it’s a no-no to leave piles behind. Just ask your neighbor's shoe, trust me you wouldn’t want to walk a day in these shoes. With green on everyone’s conscious now a days, it is important to do your “doodie” by safely disposing of your dogs business.

The fact is dog poop is hazardous to ones health and should never be left on the ground as a natural fertilizer. If you don’t perform your civic duty you and your furry friend are likely to be chased by a pack of eco pups sporting the trendiest treehugging organic tees. Don’t be surprised if you find a green squad picket line in your front yard. Okay, perhaps this is a tidbit exaggerated, but you get the picture. But on a serious note if you don’t pick up you may find yourself being charged a hefty fine from the dog poop patrol. These are one bunch of hounds you don’t want sniffing your trail.

Like the saying goes "Fences don't make good neighbors" well the same holds true for dog piles left on your neighbors green, lush, and freshly mowed lawn. Which was probably voted best-manicured lawn 3 years in a row! Oh, if lawns could talk, the stories they would leak to the tabloids. No one likes their face or mug shot, in your dogs case “mutt” shot plastered on the front page or caught on tape.

But perhaps you’ve been on the receiving end of the dog leash. Sadly, you have been an innocent victim of a poo crime by a disgruntled neighbor on the block, who by the way is no Mister Rogers. Yes, those pooper non-scoopers who let their dogs out at night to do their #2 business on your lawn so they are not caught in the act. As always the culprits decide to flee from the scent & scene of the crime only to leave this unsightly evidence behind. They have even managed to out wit the Neighborhood Dog Crime Watch. Unfortunately you're left picking up a squishy mess. Because nothing spoils a lovely morning then waking up to the unfortunate luck of stepping in dog poop, fresh off the press, left behind by a suspect four-legged friend. Leaving you constantly paranoid and scouring your yard for heaping land mines. What’s worst, is that you are now late for your meeting. Not even a hot Cup of Joe could turn that frown upside down.

There are many well meaning dog owners who reuse free grocery plastic bags to do their part to keep the earth and community clean by picking up dog poo. However, plastic bags are made of petroleum, which is non renewable, do not biodegraded and takes thousands of years to break down. Now that’s a lot of dog years! Even some cities like San Francisco have ban the use of plastic bags to reduce, reduce, and reduce the amount of waste that goes to landfills. Well, for all you plastic bag toting dog walkers you can retire your mothers stockpile of plastic grocery bags as the end all for doggie pickup and upgrade, or in this case "biodegrade". Move over grocery bags, now there is a new plastic bag in town and a greener way to scoop poop. So say “Hello” to an eco-friendly alternative to riding the world of that squishy stuff while lowering your carbon paw print.

Well, introducing the Spike Brand Business Bag, the Eco Sooper Dooper Pooper Scooper to save the day. These pickup bags are a great eco-solution to that “poop-lution” problem. I have had the chance to try out these doggie pick up bags first hand and they work great. Just crack open a box of business bags and take a whiff or sniff. Mmmmmm. Corn. But don’t be fooled by the smell these bags are not edible; trust me I’ve tried and was scolded. These bags are made from real corn so they biodegrade completely in just 45 days and are strong. Unlike those plastic grocery bags that litter landfills, taking centuries to decompose. Not to mention that plastic grocery bags have a tendency to break and tear leaving newly manicured hands to close for comfort to that warm batch. Also, regular plastic bags keep those dog piles preserved and Oh so zip lock fresh for 100’s of years. Possibly clogging the throats of poor innocent earthworms and dung beetles trying so hard to perform their civic duty by turning our banana and orange peel compost pile into fertilizer. Say “no” to bare hands and say, “yes” to Spike Brand Business. Use one on every business trip you make with Spot, for a clean planet and a cleaner conscience!

So, whether it’s in the brushes, on the sidewalk, near a hydrant (a dogs version of the port-a-potty), or on a neighbor’s lawn it is important to do the right thing and pick up. Follow the golden rule and be courteous of those joggers, law-abiding dog walking citizens, neighbors, and speed walkers out there. Because no one likes to step in dog poo. Just take it from me and all my pup pals lets all work together to do our duty or in this case "doodie" to keep the earth clean. Because no one (four legged included) wants a visual remainder of what your dog ate for dinner or should not have eaten. So the verdict is in, we would all agree that this is something we would rather not see or smell.

Barkingly yours,

Lola the eco-dog

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