Dog Waste – An Elegant Solution

“The dog is the god of frolic.” – Henry Ward Beecher

This year Media Borough Public Works installed large waste bins at our former dog waste stations and removed the poop bag dispensers.  Why?  First, we had gotten many complaints from residents that the bins were overflowing and unsightly.  Second, we literally could not keep the poop bag dispensers filled.  Many would be emptied of their 400 bags the very same day we filled them.  We don’t know how or why, but we do know that there aren’t that many dogs in Media.  We have gotten very good response about the large waste bins.  We are hoping our residents will do the right thing and make sure they carry their own bags.

But if you are walking your dog and the inevitable happens, what do you do if there is no public waste bin around?

  1. Stick it in your neighbor’s garbage can?  (Um.  Not neighborly.  And what if they SEE you?)
  2. Pop it in the nearest dumpster?  (Be aware that there are fines for illegal dumping.)
  3. Create a smell-free home dog poop disposal system (Yes! Now we are getting somewhere!)
  4. Use flushable, compostable dog poop bags (Definitely an option.  But make sure you take out the leaves and sticks)

This article focuses on answer #3.  It is very easy to create a smell-free dog poop disposal system.

When you take your dog out for a walk, bring several recycled or compostable plastic bags with you (check for holes in the recycled bags).  Scoop the poop using the plastic bag inversion technique—from

“You simply slip an inverted plastic bag over your hand, pick up the pile, and then tie the bag shut…”

Now you have sealed the smelly substance in a (hopefully) impermeable enclosure.  But it still smells a little, right?  If you live in an apartment with a dumpster you already have a disposal system—so no problem.  But if you are in a house with no dumpster, here is the solution:  get a small, metal, lidded, foot-pedal-operated waste bin.  

This 1 gallon-sized bin(see picture) costs $10 and is easily found in hardware stores and online.  This one is from Ikea and has been outside for three years.  It is weatherproof and looks nice.  It has a foot pedal, so you don’t even have to bend over to pop in the loaded bag.   

Keep it next to your trash cans.  Before you take your garbage to the street (twice a week in Media!!), tip the contents of your dog waste bin into the top bag.  

Simple.  Elegant.  So little effort.  And so thoughtful of your neighbors and community.