Updated: Jul 12
If you can get over the initial “ick” factor, composting your dog’s poop is absolutely worth considering. Not only is it environmentally friendly, but it is a simple, natural, and inexpensive option for use as a nutrient-rich and surprisingly odor-free fertilizer that plants love.
Why is Dog Poop Such a Problem Environmentally?
Are you one of the millions of owners that uses “biodegradable” bags to scoop your dog’s poop before putting it in the trash? Maybe you walk on remote trails and flick your dog’s doody into the bushes, thinking it is fine because it will decompose naturally, and no one is going to tread on it there.
Rose Seemann is the founder of the pet composting company Envirowagg and author of The Pet Poo Pocket Guide: How to Safely Compost and Recycle Pet Waste. “There’s a huge amount of dog and cat waste now—as much as there was human waste in the fifties, and we’ve got septic systems for that. Recently as much as 60% of households have dogs or cats, and just a few years ago, it was 40%. So we’ve got to do something with this dog waste,” she explains.
Much of the waste we scoop ends up in landfill, and, unfortunately, unless it is a highly-rated compostable type, the bag used will take many years to fully degrade, if at all.
Professor Leigh Ackland is the Director of the Centre for Cellular & Molecular Biology in the School of Life and Environmental Sciences at Deakin University in Melbourne, Australia. She has been composting her own dog’s poop for years.
She explains that poops left to break down au natural commonly end up making their way into our waterways through runoff, and fecal coliform bacteria is a significant problem. “You will get algal blooms or bacterial proliferation because of all the extra nutrients from the dog poop, and the water becomes contaminated, with potential health risks.”
Read More of this article here: