Besides the fact that it’s just plain gross to step in dog poop, there are important tips about dog poop that will help keep our community’s waterways clean and healthy.
Like human poop, pet poop is raw sewage that contains pathogens such as bacteria, viruses, and parasites which can transmit disease to people. Some of these pathogens can last for years in the environment or your backyard. Children who play outside are at the greatest risk for infection. When high levels of fecal-related bacteria are found in a body of water, wading, swimming, and shellfish harvesting are restricted because of the health risk posed to people’s health.
Pet poop contains nutrients, which cause weeds and algae in waterbodies to grow more rapidly and in larger quantities than normal. Excess weeds and algal growth in water changes the balance of the ecosystem. Decaying plant material, from the excess weed and algal growth, uses up oxygen dissolved in water. This can reduce the amount of dissolved oxygen available in creeks and lakes to support fish and other aquatic life.