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Spokesdog's Canine Couch

A journey about dogs and their people by Diane Rich

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No Poo Left Behind

January 27th, 2013 at Sun, 27th, 2013 at 4:55 pm by Diane Rich

Washington state is home to quite a number of dog lovers.   Based on a study by the American Veterinary Medical Association it is  estimated that there are 1.6 million dogs in Washington State. That means hundreds of tons of new dog poop every day.

Dogs have become family to most pet people.  Pet parents enjoy bringing the family dog along on car rides and have become committed to taking the dog on daily walks or jogs in and out of the neighborhood. Dogs can also be seen with families enjoying  our many beautiful  parks and hiking trails.  Dogs accompany their people who meet up with friends for a coffee.

Unfortunately, most of the time  when I meet up with clients or take my dog for a walk it is necessary to sidestep a pile or two of poo. Trying to get poo off the bottom of your shoe or trying to keep your dog’s curious nose off of another dog’s poo can be an aerobic activity. Oral fecal contact is one way dogs transmit a myriad of health related problems to each other.

c Diane Rich 2013 Next to a parking lot in a small landscaped area for shrubs at one of our busy,  local shopping areas.
Kirkland 1-26-13.

Property managers were getting so tired of complaints about dog poo on the grounds a company was developed called Pooprints which matches up the dog’s DNA from a poo sample with that canine.  The company and property managers are hopeful that this may be a solution, albeit a complicated one that may hold dog owner’s feet to the fire to scoop the dog poo.

Dog parks and regular parks post specific signage to remind dog owners and walkers to tend to the poo. Many beaches do not allow dogs on the sand at all due to the poo problem.  Barefoot beachgoers are not happy about stepping in dog poo let alone having children play in the contaminated sand.

c Diane Rich 2013   Dogs allowed on beaches at the Washington coast

Seattle Municipal Code SMC 9.25.082 Offenses relating to safety and sanitation.

It is unlawful for an owner to:

A. Allow the accumulation of animal feces in any open area, run, cage or yard wherein animals are kept and to fail to remove or dispose of feces at least once every twenty-four (24) hours

B. Fail to remove the fecal matter deposited by his/her animal on public property or private property of another before the owner leaves the immediate area where the fecal matter was deposited

C. Fail to have in his/her possession the equipment necessary to remove his/her animal’s fecal matter when accompanied by said animal on public property or public easement

Now, if they could come up with a DNA detector for cigarette butts and the science to link back to the smoker who flicked the butt on some public street, sidewalk or park rather than properly disposing of it then who knows where this type of DNA testing will lead.

c Diane Rich 2013

Lord Byron, “Character is what you are in the dark.”  So even though you don’t think someone is looking, please pick up after your dog.

Diane Rich Dog Training, LLC

I have been training dogs and their people for over 25 years. I work with pups from 7 weeks old to senior plus dogs and offer basic obedience to advanced off leash training both privately and group classes. Other services include behavior consultations to help both ends of the leash with everything from aggression, puppy/dog manners and public manners to separation anxiety. As a "real world" dog trainer, I take training out of the classroom or home when both the pet and family are ready, and take training to the street. I also offer pet therapy training classes preparing both the handler and dog for their therapy test and future service as a therapy team. I also coordinate several pet therapy programs in the Seattle area. My complete bio, description of services, class dates and on line class registration is listed on my website at

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