Getting perspective on a stinky problem

I have been trying to steer away from this issue but since Christmas, I’ve noticed it a lot more in Anagach.

Dog poo.

First thing to say is that I am a dog owner and I take that dog to the woods for exercise and yes, to do her “business”. Every jacket I own has a poo bag in its pocket.

There’s also been a few stories in the national press recently – it’s a subject that comes round every so often.

The subject caused a bit of a row a couple of years ago in Anagach when the local nursery put up posters pleading with people to pick up their rubbish and dog poo*. There was lots of chat among dog walkers who had made the effort to train their dogs to go off path to do toilet. To some, it felt like they could not win.

Even longer ago, volunteers spray painted piles of poo in Anagach to highlight how long they had been there and there was a poo count at one stage.

I think most owners do pick up the poo if it’s on the path. But who knows the circumstances of the ones that are left on the sidelines? The owner could be disabled and unable to bend; sometimes you just don’t see the dog doing it.

But lately it’s been the people who pick up the poo in a bag, then hang it from a tree, or leave it lying on the ground – like a lost things. It’s harder to defend this practice, which essentially seems to be borne of laziness.

You’ve just started your walk, your dog does a poop, you pick it up but the only bins are at the extreme ends of General Wade’s (where the council lorry has access). ‘Ah’ you think, ‘we’ll hang it here and get it on the way back.’ But of course, you don’t pass that way, or you don’t remember/notice the hanging poop. And who wants to carry a poo bag all the way round if you don’t have to?

(I’ve done the hanging poop – but was careful to pick it up on the return. Paranoid, almost.)

Below are just a few of the pictures I’ve taken in Anagach over the past few months. At times it’s seemed like there’s a new bag of poo in the undergrowth or resting on a tree stump everyday. And those turqoise and orange bags really do stick out a mile from where they’ve been thrown into the blaeberry bushes.

Not sure what looks worse: a pile of poo on the edge of the path or a bag hung on a tree, like some kind of Christmas bauble?

Really, they’re just as bad as each other.

But if you do fancy a laugh on the subject there’s this spoof story: www.//cornishnews.com

*It was a bit galling later when I found coloured chalks, used by the children to draw on the trees, scattered on the ground where a dog could have eaten them. Ironically, the posters got wet and eventually fell off the trees, becoming litter.

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