3 Ways to Scoop Your Dog’s Poop

Cleaning up after your dog may well be a big, stinky problem if you don’t know an easy way to deal with it. Here are my favorite methods.

By: coral
Poop bags are probably the easiest way to deal with the mess. By: coral

Cleaning up after your dog may well be a big stinky problem if you don’t know an easy way to eliminate it.

Dog waste, if not properly disposed, can become a health hazard:

  • If you leave waste on the ground, worms and parasites such as giardia, salmonella and E. coli can gather, later infecting people who come into contact with it.
  • Also, rainwater can wash waste into waterways, depleting oxygen from the water.

So it’s important to know how to properly dispose of dog poop. Besides, in many places, it’s the law.

1. Biodegradable Bags and Boxes

Dog poop bags are probably the most convenient method of cleaning up after your pet.

  • Don’t use standard plastic bags, which are not earth-friendly. Biodegradable dog poop bags claim to break down easily in as little time as 3 months. Buy them in bulk to save money. Check out the eco-friendly bags from Petful.
  • An alternative to bags is a pooper scooper.
  • If you’d rather scoop cheaply, use a spare dust pan from your home. Line the pan with a biodegradable plastic bag. Enzyme products (such as Nature’s Miracle and Kennel Fresh) or lime will help eliminate odors.

Scoop your yard daily, or every time your dog eliminates.

2. Do-It-Yourself Dog Toilet

This next one is for advanced do-it-yourselfers. Instructions:

  1. Set up a bucket with holes along the bottom and bury it in your back yard.
  2. Then dump the dog’s waste into it.
  3. Add water mixed with an enzyme drain cleaner, which will help break down the waste.

3. Or Build a Worm Compost Bin

This last one is for the truly ambitious do-it-yourselfer. Or hippies.

If you seek to convert dog poop into something more useful, a worm compost bin might be the way to go. The creepy-crawlies will eat the waste as well as your food scraps from home, and you will end up with worm castings, a terrific plant fertilizer. Not to mention, kids love worms.

Here are the simplified instructions:

  1. Use a large plastic storage bin with ventilation holes drilled in the bottom.
  2. Shred and moisten some newspaper pages, and add the paper and a handful of dirt to the bin.
  3. Place the worms inside and cover with a piece of moistened cardboard.

Dave Baker

View posts by Dave Baker
Dave Baker, founder and publisher of Petful, is a journalist and editor who has worked at The New York Times and The Nation magazine. He was also part of the Pulitzer Prize–winning team at The Times-Picayune newspaper of New Orleans. After Hurricane Katrina, he moved to Brooklyn, New York, where Petful is now based. A longtime advocate for pet food safety, Dave has been passionately tracking pet food recalls for the past decade. He has a bachelor’s degree in English from Clemson University in his home state of South Carolina. Dave has cared for a number of dogs, cats and other small pets over the years.

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