Why is it, right in the middle of a busy intersection, crowded bus stop, or footpath swarming with pedestrians, your dog decides this is the best time to take a dump?
Even on a quiet street, in a quiet neighbourhood, if your dog squats you can bet your bottom dollar someone (or a police officer) will appear from nowhere and catch your dog in the act.
Dog poop, and why our dogs decide to take a dump at such inconvenient times, is a more interesting topic than we realise. Hence this dog poop guide!
Only dog owners will understand!
Why do dogs poo at the most inconvenient time?
It’s easy for us to assume our dogs are being naughty for pooing in public places, but it’s actually our fault for not understanding why.
Of course, your beloved dog is not naughty. While every dog has its own unique personality quirks and temperament, when it comes to taking a squat it simply does what every healthy and normal dog would do.
The real problem is this – when your dog is resting, which they do most of the day, their bowel is nice and comfortable. They don’t need to poo.
But, as soon as you take them outside for a walk and they start moving, their bowels kick in and they need a poo. Whether they’re big or small doesn’t matter, it’s a simple case of how their bodies work, and that’s why they poo in inconvenient places.
Keeping that in mind helps us understand why our dog may poo in public, and hopefully help prevent those awkward moments if you adjust your routine.
Always make sure you have a poop bag at the ready!
Did you know you can train your dog to use the toilet? And flush it!
If you don’t believe me, here’s video evidence of a dog using the toilet to both wee and poo, and flush it afterwards!
How to stop your dog pooing in public
Once you understand our dogs feel the need to poo as soon as they start moving around, that helps us prevent them pooing in public.
If your morning routine is to wake up, grab a Nespresso, then walk your dog along the busiest pedestrian zone in town, then you’re setting yourself up to fail.
The simple solution is to change your dog’s routine.
Start their walk somewhere which becomes their regular poop spot. This can be a laneway, park, or your back yard. Just keep it, well, regular.
Once they’ve pooped, pick it up with a poop bag, then take them for a walk along the promenade. No more embarrassing moments.
Yes, it’s that simple!
But… if this doesn’t work, then there may be another reason. What food are you feeding – is their brand of dog food making them over-poop?
Believe it or not, some brands of dog food in Australia cause our dogs to excessively poo and fart.
Aussie pet food bible Pet Food Reviews is a great place to start in this respect. Do you know what’s in your dog food, and what it might be doing to their guts?
Why we must clean up our dog’s poop!
If you visit the park often then you must have stepped right into some steaming, hot pile of doggy poo. Probably more than once!
One utterly irresponsible dog owner let their dog poo right at my front gate on a regular basis. My entrance way carpet really suffered until I caught the dog in the act one day and shouted at the owner.
It’s gross, ruins people’s mornings, and the only excuse we have is we’re lazy. How pathetic is that?
That’s why, as a responsible dog owner, you should pick up after your dog – it’s the right thing to do by your dog, and by others. Actually, it’s the cool thing to do.
Always have some poop bags on hand, preferably biodegradable or “compost” bags, and even better one of the little poo bag dispensers which attach to your dog’s collar.
I highly recommend the “COMPOST A PAK” poo bags at Pet Circle* as they’re affordable and easy to open with your fingers. Much better than the ones at Woolworths and K-Mart which frustrate me.
* They’re made of CORN! SAVE THE PLANET!!!
Really interesting facts about dog poo!
I said dog poo was more interesting a subject than you probably realise.
Here are some really interesting dog poo facts (along with cited research!):
- In a year the average dog poops over 125kg of waste.
- It takes a pile of dog poop 12 months or more to break down completely!
- On average, a healthy dog poops 1-3 times a day. How often depends on the amount of food he eats and how good the food is, as well as his age and lifestyle.
- Most dogs will intentionally avoid their own dog poop.
- There is dog poop all over the sidewalk in Paris.
- Dog poop is a major source of bacterial pollution in urban stormwater.
- Dog poop is not a good fertiliser. It’s toxic to your lawn and can burn and discolour the grass.
- Before the enactment of the 1978 law that required dog owners to clean up after their pets, approximately 40 million pounds of dog poop were left on the streets of New York every year.
- The bacteria, viruses, and parasites that are carried in dog poop can threaten the health of humans and wildlife.
- The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) classified pet waste, including dog poop, as a pollutant in the same category as toxic chemicals and oil.
- A days worth of dog poop from a single large dog can contain 7.8 billion fecal coliform bacteria. That’s enough to close 15 acres of shellfish beds!
- From a population of 100 dogs, three days worth of dog poop would contribute enough bacteria and nutrients to close a bay to swimming.
- Contact with infected dog poop can spread hookworms, ringworms, tapeworms and Salmonella.
- When dog poop is carried into waterways it adds nitrogen to the water. The excess nitrogen reduces the oxygen in water that is necessary for healthy underwater grasses, wildlife and fish.
- There is a city in Spain that made it compulsory for dog owners to register pets with a canine DNA database. This allows dog patrols to match dog poop found on the street or in parks with the DNA and fine owners $400 plus the cost of lab work.
- The roundworm eggs found in dog poop take over two weeks to hatch, and therefore when you pick up your dogs poop immediately there are no health risks.
- A healthier diet can reduce the unpleasantness of your dogs poops! Quality food with less fillers will reduce the amount of dog poop for you to pick up and make it more tolerable.