Stick & Flick or Bag It?
8th June was World Oceans Day, a day to celebrate our Oceans and come together around the world to reduce plastic pollution.
Thanks to Sir David Attenborough and the wonderful Blue Planet series we are now all aware of the detrimental impact we are having on our oceans. The numbers are staggering, there’s said to be over 5 trillion pieces of plastic in our oceans, with over 100 million marine animals killed by plastic each year. We can all make a few changes to start making a difference, whether that’s making more of an effort to recycle or simply use less plastic at home or doing our bit when we are out on a walk.
As a follow on from World Oceans Day, Sunday 10thJune is 2 minute beach clean, street clean and litter pick day – and we believe that we can all do our bit whilst we’re out with our dogs!
We all walk our dogs daily, just think of the positive impact all the dog owners in the UK could have if we spent a couple of minutes each walk picking up litter along with our dog’s poop. It was something I used to do when we lived in Surrey, the local park I took Rocky to in the morning was a terrible place for litter, so each morning I would use the walk with Rocky to pick up as much as I could and pop it in the bin. It didn’t really take me any longer but did make me feel a whole lot better about the place and the impact I was having on the local community, litter seems to breed litter, and I noticed that the less there was in the park the less there would be the following morning. In fact, some days it felt like the most productive part of my day but that’s a whole other story!!!
And since we have moved to the coast, we always get out an extra poop bag to pick up any litter on the coastal path or in the woods, and not to forget any plastic we see on our beautiful beaches.
A fist full of plastic collected on Fistral Beach
Dog walkers can get a bad reputation, unfortunately it just takes a small number of irresponsible owners to cause bad press for us all when they don’t pick up their dog poop. How about we start a movement to spend a couple of minutes picking up litter as well as our dog’s poop to make our local walks even more beautiful, and to give dog walkers a good name! #2minutebeachclean, #2minutestreetclean, #2minutelitterpick
We all have a responsibility as dog owners to clean up after our dogs, so how do you do it?
Bag and bin it, bag and leave it, or stick and flick it?
There’s no question we have to deal with it, their poop is dangerous stuff, and there is a lot of it! According to PFMA data from last year, there are just over 8.6m dogs in the UK, assuming each of them poop around an average of 3/4 lb each day, that comes to over 1 million tonnes of poop per year! That’s a whole heap of s**t to deal with!!
For a start, it’s not pleasant trying to get it off your shoes, but did you also know that just 1 gram of dog poop contains 23 million faecal coliform bacteria? We all know that this is dangerous to humans, especially those more vulnerable such as small children and the elderly, but it can also have a detrimental effect on the environment, not just on the wildlife or livestock nearby, but the impact can also go as deep as our water plains.
Stick and Flick?
Stick and flick means you grab a stick and flick the poop into the grass, which might seem to be the natural thing to do, with the waste disappearing naturally, but the lasting impact can be very harmful.
This following piece of information really put it into perspective for me, our natural ecosystem can cope with just 2 dogs per square mile. Think about when you walk your dog out and about, how many dogs you see. If everyone were to find a stick and flick their dog poop, it could have a catastrophic effect on our ecosystems. The bacteria can live in the soil for years after the mess has degraded, filtering into the water system, risking the health of local wildlife and livestock as well as human water supplies. In the US, studies have shown that dog poop is the 3rdcause of water pollution, it categorises it as dangerous to our environment as an oil spill. Whilst in the UK the Environmental Protection Agency has placed dog poop in the same category as insecticides, oil, grease and toxic chemicals. You wouldn’t be comfortable leaving a trail of oil behind you on a walk, so why leave your dog poop?! So, it’s better for everyone and everything to pick it up.
Bag it and bin it
But what about those that bag and then don’t bin it?! Grrrrr!!! That makes me mad!!!
There’s nothing worse than seeing a discarded poop bag left on a verge or on a path whilst walking your dog
If your dog is anything like Rocky they will poop far from a bin, but that is no excuse, and the current war on plastic surely makes leaving your poop behind in a bag is as bad as not picking it up at all!! There’s nothing worse than seeing a bag of poop hanging from a tree or left on the path for you or a cyclist to avoid! Fear not, we have a few solutions!!
The easy solutions available at Paws in Padstow
Firstly, bag it!!! We sell Beco poop bags, which are made from degradable material, so they are better for the environment whilst also being bigger and stronger than other bags, meaning there’s less chance of a nasty accident when picking up the poop! There’s nothing worse than that warm feeling on your fingers when the bag splits is there?!
Bag and bin it with Beco degradable bags which are bigger and stronger than other bags.
To make sure you never forget your bags, we also sell Beco pockets. They come with a handy bungee rope to attach the bags to the lead so you can be sure you won’t leave home without them. Each hold a roll of poop bags, and we stock them in two colours, green or cream to co-ordinate with your lead!
Beco Pockets hold a roll of poop bags and come with a bungy rope to attach them to the lead
What if there isn’t a bin near-by? The Camel Trail and South West Coastal Path are great places for a dog walk, but as you have probably experienced bins can be few and far between!! If only there was something you could use to store the bag of poop until you find a bin? Look no further, we sell just that!! They are called Dicky Bags, and are perfect for when your pooch poops miles from a bin! Made in Cornwall from neoprene, they are the civilised way to carry your dog poop until you get to a bin! They have fragranced discs inside to mask any nasty smells whilst on your walk, and have a handy pouch in the top to keep your poop bags in too. Simply bag the poop as normal, pop it in the Dicky Bag and keep it there until you find a bin! They also come with a clip on them so you can attach it to the lead, your belt or bag so you don’t leave home without it.
Dicky bags come in 3 sizes, small, medium and large. Pick the size to suit your dog’s poop!
Dicky bags come in 3 sizes, Small, Medium and Large. Pick the size to suit the size of your dog’s poop! We use a medium for our Beagle and would recommend a large for breeds like Labradors.
So, the debate will continue, Stick or Flick or Bag and Bin It, you know where we stand!! Bag and Bin it, or Bag it, Dicky Bag it and then Bin it if there isn’t a bin nearby. It’s better for the environment and the long-term health of not just our countryside but also our natural eco-systems.
Whatever your view, it’s something all responsible dog owners need to consider, and to help you on your way we hope that you can see that we have some great products that will make it all a bit easier and more pleasant for you!! And whilst you’re at it, do your bit for the war on litter and plastic, by taking a couple of minutes to pick up any you see on your dog walk to help make our environment and lovely planet that bit nicer.
Enjoy your walkies until next time!