Steve and I have had dogs pretty much since we first were married over 30 years ago. Right now we have just two – Bear and Kona – but with all the hair they shed you would think we had a dozen.
I love to walk our dogs though sometimes it can be challenge when I try to take both out at the same time. Bear weighs over 70 lbs. and especially since I broke my wrist I’m not as secure as I was in being able to rein him in if something catches his eye and he wants to take off. Kona is a great walker, though. He typically stays close to me when we walk and rarely gets agitated if he sees another dog coming his way.
Being a responsible pet parent, I always have a doggy bag (not the kind from restaurants) available if the dog has the need to “go.” I have no hesitation in quickly scooping and then going on my way. But I saw a sign on the lawn of a home – “No Poop/Pee Zone” – while walking Kona that slowed me in my tracks.
I already have the doggy bag for weighty deposits but what of the liquid kind? What, if anything, is my responsibility when my dog lifts his leg? First off, I thought that was a natural thing that animals did to mark their territory. I would think that instinct would be particularly strong here in the foothills where there is such a wide variety of animals that roam our neighborhoods. But with the drought and the restriction in the number of days that we can water our lawns – and perhaps wash away any remnants of dog visits – maybe there’s an additional responsibility that pet parents have in making sure that absolutely no deposits are left behind. But I don’t like the idea of yanking on Kona’s collar.
And what about weighty deposits left on non-private areas, like along the grassy area near the wash? Unfortunately there is already a bunch of trash in those areas as it is; should a dog owner be responsible for picking up dog messes there too?
I definitely don’t want to be irresponsible, but am sort of at a loss at what my role is. What exactly is expected of pet parents?
Feel free to send me a note with your thoughts.