As we wrap up Water Quality Month, there’s something important we need to discuss: dog poop.
If you’re scratching your head trying to figure out the connection, let me paint a very unsightly picture. Dog poops on ground. It rains. Rain gathers bacteria and particles from poop. Contaminated rain now flows into the stormwater system. Stormwater flows directly into our waterways. We go fishing/swimming/boating. Gross.
Not fertilizer. Do not make the cow manure connection! Most dogs eat processed foods and high protein diets which lead to acidic poops. All poop is not created equal.
Bacteria. If you’ve ever heard the announcements about sections of the beach being closed due to high bacteria levels, guess where some of that bacteria comes from? You guessed it. This means that the dog poop you leave on your lawn has successfully made it to the beach (along with other bacteria sources) in such high levels that humans are warned to stay out of the water or risk getting sick. Gross.
Parasites. Dog poop can spread parasites and worms on to other dogs and even to humans. Letting it lie around your backyard or leaving it around the neighborhood increases your chance of infection and the chances you might infect a dog or child. Hookworm and roundwork are a couple of gross examples of what you could catch.
So be a responsible dog owner and scoop the poop!