In summer 2011, the Copper River Watershed Project kicked off Clean Streets. Clean Streams. Clean Shoes. in Cordova. This scoop-the-poop campaign is a part of our overall efforts to reduce and mitigate the effects of storm-water pollution. We are focusing on dog waste pollution because:
- Water quality ranked as the number 1 concern of Cordovan citizens in a survey conducted by the Native Village of Eyak’s CARE program.
- Dog poop has a very real and negative effect on water quality.
- Compared to other non-point water pollution sources, dog poop is a relatively straight- forward problem to fix: scoop the poop!
The Scoop on Poop
So what’s the big deal? Dog poop is a natural fertilizer, right? Wrong. The truth about dog poop is that it’s the equivalent of putting raw sewage on the sidewalk. When pet owners choose not to clean up after their dog, the health of our community, environment, and particularly our children is put at risk.
Fecal Facts & Figures
- 162 lb. of dog poop are generated in Cordova daily.
- Due to its high nutrient concentration, dog poop is toxic to your lawn and favorite trails. Poop left on the ground causes burns and discoloration to grass and other vegetation.
- The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) classifies pet waste as a dangerous pollutant in the same category as toxic chemicals and oil.
- An average size dog dropping contains 3 billion fecal coliform bacteria.
- In addition to fecal coliform, the Center for Disease Control (CDC) confirms that dog poop can spread parasites including hookworms, ringworms, tapeworms, and Salmonella.
- Every time it rains in Cordova, un-scooped poop is washed into storm-drains that flow directly into streams, Odiak Pond, and Eyak Lake.
- Although poop may eventually “wash-away,” it does not disappear. The parasite eggs contained in dog poop can linger in the grass and soil for up to 4 years! When a human or animal comes into contact with that soil through everyday activities like walking barefoot, gardening, or playing, they risk infection from those eggs.
What You Can Do
Be a part of the dog pollution solution by:
Step 1: Always carry a plastic bag with you when you walk your dog. Re-using an old plastic grocery or newspaper delivery bag works well.
Step2: Using the bag like a glove, you can then pick up the pet waste, turn the bag inside-out around the waste, and seal the bay by tying a knot.
Step 3: Dispose of the bagged waste in a trash can.
By following these 3 easy steps, you can help Cordova keep its streets, streams, and shoes clean!
Take the Scoop-the-Poop Poll
Please help us learn more about this issue by taking the Native Village of Eyak’s Scoop-the-Poop Poll.
The data gathered by the poll is compiled and shared with the EPA to help better understand the scope of Cordova’s pet waste problem and potentially fund solutions.
You can also stop by the Copper River Watershed Project anytime this summer for a FREE dog biscuit and poop-scoop BioBag.
For more information on the importance of pet waste removal, you can view this publication by the EPA . To educate your children about the importance of cleaning up after the dog you can also check out this site.