Dog Poop:
Scoop it, bag it, and
throw it in the trash

Every time and everywhere!

Small changes add up to a big difference
Dogs are good
Unscooped dog poop is bad —
for people, pets, and the environment
Be a good human and scoop every poop
Dog poop is not fertilizer. When left on the ground, it spreads bacteria and parasites, which can make people and pets sick.
Rainwater carries pet waste to streams, lakes, and Puget Sound. Bacteria and nutrients in pet waste pollute our natural waterways and cause unsafe swimming and fishing conditions.
Pet waste ALWAYS goes in the trash, even if you use a compostable bag. Commercial compost facilities do not get hot enough to kill the germs in pet waste, and neither does your backyard compost.
Spread the word, not the poo!
Pet waste questions we hear the most
What should I do with pet waste?
Scoop it, bag it, and throw it in the trash. Every time and everywhere!
Can I use pet waste as compost or fertilizer?
No. Never put pet waste into your backyard compost or a yard waste/curbside compost bin. Pet waste can contain harmful organisms. Commercial compost facilities do not get hot enough to kill the bacteria and organisms in pet waste, and neither does your backyard compost.
Can I leave it on the trail? It’s natural.
No. There is nothing “natural” about the number of dogs concentrated in Western Washington. We feed our dogs food that is not found on the trail. So their poop is not part of the natural food chain.

Dog waste tossed in the brush or left on the trail exposes trail users, other dogs and wildlife to harmful bacteria and pathogens. The poop travels to waterways on our shoes or animal paws with the rain, water harming wildlife, fish and other marine life.
Can I leave it in my backyard to fertilize my lawn?
No. Dog poop is too acidic for your yard – it will kill the grass. When left in garden beds, it allows bacteria and parasites to spread into the soil. It can make people and pets that play in the yard or garden sick, too. Pick it up and throw it in the trash!
If I use a compostable bag, can I compost pet waste?
No. Dog poop bags labeled “biodegradable,” “oxo-degradable,” or “compostable” still must go in the trash. The pet waste inside the bag is the problem. It can contain harmful organisms that are not killed through the commercial composting process.
I always pick up my dog’s poop ... except when I run out of bags. What can I do?
Carry extra bags on walks. Some people like to tie a spare bag to their dog’s leash, or bring an extra roll of dog bags on their walk. If you get caught without a bag, see if another nearby dog walker or neighbor can spare a bag.
I hate picking up dog poop in my yard, especially if it has rained. Is there a way to make it less gross?
Watch the weather and try to pick up dog poop before it rains. Creating a regular pick up schedule can help, such as every day before it gets dark. You can buy a pet waste scooper, which includes a rake and bin designed for easy pet waste pick up. Simply insert a bag into the bin, rake pet waste in, tie off the bag, and throw it in the trash.
Why are we always talking about poop?
Everybody poops, every day. Your city and county work hard to keep the water clean with functioning septic systems, wastewater treatment, and managing livestock waste. They need your help because poop is a problem when it washes into waterways.

Want to share more than just zoonotic diseases?! (Hint: If it can be passed from other animals to humans – it’s a zoonotic disease)

Find out how wayward dog poo pollutes watersheds. Are you ready to take the dog poo quiz?
See what other small actions that can make a big impact on the Puget Sound waterways
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