Pet Care Tips and Articles

Picking Up After Your Dog

Please pick up after your dog People who don't pick up after their dogs is a hot-button issue. Many dog owners will swear that they always 'poop-n-scoop', every time, yet somehow there are probably an equal number of people who swear that they consistently see dog owners walking away from their responsibility. Here are some comments from frustrated people - including other dog owners! - that show just how important the issue is to maintain a clean, peaceful, and harmonious community (and if that doesn't convince you, here are some other reasons why you should always poop-n-scoop).

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Reasons to Poop-n-Scoop

If the above comments aren't enough to convince you that picking up after your dog is just the polite thing to do, then here are more reasons why you should poop-n-scoop:

  • Dog poop carries contaminants. Bacteria and diseases from pet waste can be transmitted to people and other pets. Bacteria, parasites, and pathogens in dog feces and contaminate soil and get washed into waterways.

  • It's just gross. Would you like to see and smell piles of feces on a daily basis? Or accidentally step in a pile and end up tracking it into your car or home? No? Then don't do it to others. Picking up after your dog isn't only the responsible thing to do, it's also the polite thing to do.

  • It's the law. In many municipalities, dog owners are expressly required to clean up after their pets. Dog bags are cheap, portable, and widely available (or just use plastic bags from the grocery store).

  • Be a good pet ambassador. There is always a lot of 'pushback' from individuals or community groups who don't want dogs allowed in venues around town, including parks. Some will even lobby to get rid of current dog parks due to the overwhelming number of owners who refuse to clean up after their dogs. Likewise, pet-friendly hotels struggle with guests who won't do the polite thing and pick up after their dogs - a disgusting sight for other guests to see and smell, and a reason for hotels to stop allowing pets. Be a good ambassador for dog owners: pick up after your dog, immediately and consistently.

Here's Why So Many People Are Frustrated...

Inconsiderate Neighbors Aren't Picking Up!

I'm wondering if anyone has had a problem with neighbours letting their dogs poop on other people's lawns? I have two sweet pups myself and I love all dogs, however I don't love all dog owners! We have an alley behind our house which is gravel (and some weeds unfortunately lol) and for some reason there are a couple of dogs that keep pooping there, RIGHT IN FRONT OF OUR GATE! This has happened to a few other neighbours too who share the alley. We have talked about it and two of them say it's actually just one woman (with two dogs) who takes her dogs out after dark and lets them poop anywhere and doesn't pick up after them! I haven't caught her at it myself. The two neighbours who have seen it have confronted the woman and asked her to clean up after her dogs and she always denies it's her dogs (even when they've just watched it from their windows!) and tells them to mind their own business. Our city has a poop-and-scoop bylaw which she obviously doesn't care about. It's really gross and I have stepped in the "offerings" many times especially when I'm out in the dark. It's disgusting.
- From 'furkids'

Nasty Neighbors

I too have an issue with my neighbors & their dogs. I live in a tower and our porches are connected. My side of the porch has the drain, theirs doesn't. Ugh! Anyways the last two years I have been dealing with those dogs pooping and peeing on their porch. My husband has said something to them many times, we talked to the tower senior, and went to housing about it (they did get written up) but they still do it! They leave the porch door open all the time (even when they aren't home) so the dogs can handle their business! I'm growing very tired of dealing with this! The smell is horrible and VERY strong!! When they "clean" it, they hose it towards the drain on my porch and all of the poop and pee dries up on my side! I don't know what to do anymore! Military housing obviously didn't help! Ohh one more year at this "Poop hole"!
- From 'melnel'


I Too Am Suffering

I too am suffering from irresponsible pet owners. We recently moved into a new apartment with a common back area, and I couldn't help but notice the 15 piles of poop that accumulated quickly. I knew it wasn't from our dog, as we always have her on a leash and pick up after her immediately. I happened to be standing by the back window one day and saw the dog come out unsupervised (leash laws anyone?), and take a massive dump, then run around for a while, even coming up the stairs onto my patio and finally the owner called the dog in. They aren't even outside while the dog is.

I tried knocking on their door to ask them to please pick up after their pet, but they wouldn't answer the door. So I notified the building landlords. They sent a letter and for about a week the problem was resolved. I know it's cold out, and trudging through e snow is unpleasant, but if I can do it for my dog, you should be able to do it for yours.

I started picking up after their dog when I went out with mine, and leaving the bags at the top of their stairs. They threw them away, but continued to let their dog out to poop without coming out too. I guess they figured I'd just keep doing it for them. I bought baggies in dispensers and hung them at the ends of the stairs so they could see the poop bags thinking maybe they'd get the hint... Nope!

Just this morning it happened again. I saw the neighbor next to them go out with her dog after and she picked it up while taking care of her dog. It doesn't seem right, or fair that we as responsible owners, have to pick up after someone else's dog. If I wanted to pick up after more than just my one dog, I'd own two.
- From 'anonymous'

It's Really Irritating

I live in a military housing community, recently pets have been allowed on the property ... and people have already complained about others dogs leaving their mess everywhere and not bothering to pick it up. The housing staff has installed posts with little boxes that have bags in them .. but no one seems to give a crap. My kids play in the grass area in the back of our house, since it's a huge open space that is also shared with the other houses, our neighbor (who also has a huge open space) across the sidewalk thinks its ok to let their weeney dog leave little sausages on our side of the lawn. It's really really irritating ... I figured I don't need to tell them anything since the housing staff has sent out letters to every door advising residents to clean up after their pooch. Since then I just picked up their crap and with the bag I used left it on there side of the lawn. At least they'll see it bothers other people that they have to clean up after their own dog. So far the message hasn't gotten across.
- From 'anonymous'

Call To Doo One's Doody

I live in a condo development and i am seeing more and more people who let their dog poop in the common grass areas and on the sidewalk leading up to the pond. It is very depressing when you take a walk or a jog and are constantly dodging poop. people want to own dogs but they don't want to take ownership of their dogs actions. What kind of person allows their dog to poop and just leave it be? What does that say about the persons character or how that person lives? Lazy is the first word that comes to my mind. Inconsiderate is the second. Sometimes the poop is the size of a sausage and it is just laying on the sidewalk attracting flies -- the heat bearing down on it for hours. I have often forgotten my scooper bags in my house and I will go into my mailbox and get junk mail and create a makeshift scooper. There is no way I could live with myself leaving my dog's feces on the sidewalk for others to step in. Such an inconsiderate act tells a lot about people. None of which is good.
- From 'queensgate'

Poo In The Street

We have a neighbor a few doors down that lets his dog poop on the street, and piles of it. Our neighbor closest to him tries to park his car in the area he knows the dog goes so that this will deter the dog owner. BUT NOPE, the dog owner still lets his dog poop in the street and in front of my other neighbors car door. Sooo what to do??? it's so gross driving by to get to my house and seeing poop on the street.

P.S. HE TOO waits till it's late at night or veryyyy early morning to let his dog walk, it's almost as if he knows to wait till people can't see what his dog does. GROSSSS!! IT'S SOOOO IRRITATING. We have two dogs, and we would never let them do that.

- From 'anonymous'

Sometimes People Don't Know

Sometimes people don't know they are bothering you by leaving the poop lying behind. Yes it sounds stupid that they wouldn't know that but it's true. My neighbour kept letting his dog go in the ditch by our home because he thought no one ever went near there (we are on an acreage). Once I told him my dogs like to run and sniff threw there and to please pick up after his dog we never had any problems after that. Sometimes it is helpful to let people know politely that they should pick up after their dogs.

- From 'DaxiesRule'

This is Crap

It is all about respect. You want a dog but don't want to take care of it, only if it is convenient for you. If your dog crap pick it up. The last thing any body want to do is have a nice walk in a park and end up stepping on some dog's crap. This will totally ruin their whole day.

- From 'hiyatran'

Stinky Situation

Check your local laws and ask around to see if there's anything that can be done. Proof may be hard to establish, but if there are enough neighbors complaining maybe it could squeak the wheel enough that actions will be taken by your city/town. Really, the only thing you can try to do is confront them and hope that embarrassment and guilt will get the better of them and they will "curb" their fecal issues! I agree, people should be responsible enough to pick up after their furry friends!

- From 'Booker'

Post a Sign

I put up a sign on my fence with the bylaw # and the wording of the bylaw from the city. There are always still the jerks who think they are above the law but the sign does help to cut down on the people who don't or won't pick up after their dogs.

- From 'anonymous'

On the Other Side of the Ocean

Amazing how it seems every country suffers this problem. I'm writing from Stockholm, Sweden because I'm researching on the net for a campaign to clear up the local area. And, in the process change the behaviour of dogs owners hwo don't pick up. It's April and the long winter covered us in snow, people stopped picking up, the snow did the job for them. But guess what, snow melts! It's a huge problem and the councils are burying their heads in the sands.

So, long story short, instead of dumping pooh on the guilty people's lawns, we're gonna make friends with the dog owners, kind of manipulative but maybe more long term. The association will arrange dog days and fun stuff, hopefully igniting a desire for the dog owners to be responsilbe. We'll see, it won't cost much and I really think the owners will find it hard to be lazy when they feel the local area cares about them and is investing in them.

Just a tip. War works short term, but becoming friends creates a life long relationship - we'll see!

- From 'swede'

I Wish You Luck

I wish you all the luck in the world, but hold little hope that it will work! My experience has been that the good dog owners are always responsible and always pick up after their dogs. The bad dog owners could not care less what you think of them and never pick up after their dogs unless directly confronted (and sometimes not even then) or punished financially. They will just walk their dogs at night and let them poop under the cover of darkness, and leave the pile there. I still wish you luck anyways.

- From 'skeptical but hopeful'

Inconsiderate Neighbors

I live in a condo community with lots of nice green space, but the woman and teenage son who live across the drive from my house bring their BIG dogs to my yard for their bathroom duties. There are piles of poop at the walkway to my screened porch, under my bedroom windows, etc. etc. They're just too lazy to walk 20 feet to a huge open area. The woman is a school teacher and I would think she would want to set a good example for her son as to how to be a good citizen.

I've had several conversations with her and she always apologizes, runs over and cleans up the most obvious piles, but then returns to the same routine. Reporting her to the condo association only brought about bad feelings and led to her not speaking to me and her son glaring at me whenever he sees me.

Not sure how to stop her inconsiderate treatment.

- From 'petlover54'


We live in a group of townhomes that back onto a grassy (shared) lawn area. A small group of inconsiderate dog owners repeatedly let their dogs poop right under the windows of some of the homes. There are two, count them TWO, garbage cans, one at each end of the grassy area, and still these dog owners are too darn lazy and inconsiderate to pick up the poop and walk a few feet to the garbage! We have posted signs and held meetings and have not had any success. It is very frustrating to deal with these people who aren't fit to live in any shared community.

- From 'TiredOfBadDogOwners'


I moved into the perfect apartment downtown, and right away noticed that somebody was letting their dog shit right on the sidewalk outside my apartment steps. Try as I might I couldn't find out who was being such a jerk. I debated on what to do. Call the Police? They have better things to do and would no doubt do nothing, I mean what could they do? Take a few days off work and spy on the area to find out who is doing it? Yeah right, I can't do that. Wait to catch the offender someday? Oh right, that may never happen, and even if I did catch them they don't have to stop when I'm not around. So in the end I put up a sign saying "Its the law, clean up after your dog, Dont be a lazy scumbag!" Well what do you know, the poop stopped appearing for two weeks. Then, someone posted a sign right next to mine, attacking my sign and myself as being rude and anti-dog. I am declaring war.

- From 'Burke'

It's So Frustrating

I don't own a dog because I travel a lot so I can't properly take care of one but I love dogs and someday I will adopt one.

I live in a rather expensive community of townhouses and there are many rules and regulations regarding what you can and can not do outside your home. One of these rules regards picking up dog waste and the heavy fines to offenders.

One of my neighbors owns a very cute, small dog but she does not pick up after him. She lets him out late in the night or early in the morning for the dog to do its business while she watches from her back door - then she brings him back inside.

Sometimes days will go by - even as far as a whole week - and the dog waste will be laying all over her open backyard or even her own cement porch.

The only times she picks up the dog feces is when she'll be spending time outdoors and on a few of those infrequent occasions, I have caught her (and also her visiting relatives) scoop the waste and walk it to neighboring bushes (in front of MY porch) and dump it there.

This is the first thing I see in the morning, when I open my upstairs bedroom windows or when I go out on my back porch to water plants... mounds of dog poop sitting everywhere for days at a time. It's SO disgusting and so against health regulations!

I don't know what to do. I'm relatively new to this community and my husband is out of town a lot for work reasons so I'm mostly alone here. I don't want to get into disputes with my neighbors. I have contacted the HOA but annonymously and nothing came out of that; except for a brief reminder in the monthly newsletter for dog owners to pick after their dogs. As if THAT is going to stop them!

Why do seemingly decent people behave this way? They KNOW that what they are doing is wrong; otherwise they wouldn't be skulking around when they're dumping feces in other people's bushes or common areas. Yet they continue to do it...

There are no fences separating houses in this community. It's almost as if all of the outdoors is a huge common area so when my neighbor dumps her dog's waste around the bushes near my home, she can always claim the bushes are part of the common area...

My issue is not with her dog defecating on my property - he sticks to her yard - but with her not picking up the waste and leaving it for her neighbors to see and smell for days at a time.

- From 'anonymous'

The Worst Is Our Park

The worst is on our park pathways! All along the pathway are poop piles. They melt into the snow and the whole pathway is studded with these piles. It is so gross. I have a dog but I do not walk him there anymore because it's so unpleasant dodging these piles! It only takes a few seconds to pick up after your dog I wish people would remember that the pathways are for everyone to enjoy.

- From 'anonymous'

Me Too! Me Too!

The worst time was when someone let their dog poop on our lawn, right beside my son's bike. They obviously knew it was the wrong thing to do because they put a handful of leaves over it! I didn't notice it and my son stepped and SLID in it! If only people would pick up the poop it's really not that hard!

By the way we have a sweet little poodle and we are dog lovers!

- From 'TommysMommy'

Another Sign Idea

Here is an idea for you - try to get the dog in the act on camera - yes it will take some time but it will happen. Once you have the dog in the act, print off a sign to put on your lawn. Have a picture of the dog and something like 'My owner doesn't clean up after me'.

- From 'anonymous'

Picking Up After Your Dog

Had to chuckle when I read these posts because I "vented" much the same comments after clearing up the area outside of our backyard.

We back onto a municipal berm and constructed a "back door" onto it as our 14 year old golden Wizard seems to find the grass... albeit often frozen... more "forgiving" for his hips than the sidewalks.

Unfortunately the area immediately outside our fence line seems to have become quite a "dumping ground" for other dog owners whose dogs are no doubt attracted to Wizard and our 19 month Mystic.

I "poopy-scooped" one day and accumulated quite the pile, literally and figuratively and observed that no wonder some people hate dogs... perhaps more to the point dog-owners. It would take no time for the owners walking the same to bend down and "poop-scoop". Just gives the "dog-haters" another reason to complain when a child steps into something, etc.

No excuses....

- From Bob & Sandy, Wizard & Mystic