26 Feb Dog Poop is a Problem on Trails: You Can Help
We support recreating with dogs. We believe that bringing dogs onto public land is both a joy and a privilege.
Sadly, we’ve seen a LOT of evidence that dog owners aren’t respecting this privilege. Namely, dog waste is multiplying on trails. If you’ve recently walked Snow Mountain Ranch or Cowiche Canyon, you’ve probably noticed this too.
Dog waste isn’t simply natural. It’s an eye sore and a health hazard for wildlife, humans, and other dogs alike.
Dog waste doesn’t naturally pile up. It piles up because of a lack of attention and a lack of care. It piles up because people forget to bring bags or leave used bags on the trail.
If you are someone who leaves bags on the trail on purpose, please note that claims of “biodegradability” are often false. Many poop bags that claim to be biodegradable don’t break down after a year, or at all.
Our lands are not remote wildernesses where waste can disappear in the vastness. These lands are like many of our backyards. And we need to be mindful to treat them this way.
We as a community can do better. And we as a community will all be better off for it.
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Cowiche Canyon Conservancy has a few simple dog rules that we’d like to remind you of. These rules exist for the health and safety of dogs, owners, trail users, and wildlife.
- Clean up after your dog. This means packing up (and packing out) your dog’s waste to keep our trails and lands clean and healthy.
- Dogs must be under control at all times. Dogs should be leashed while in parking lots and at busy trailheads. When off leash, dogs must be under voice control. Dogs are presumed NOT to be under control when:
- they are off trail
- they threaten, harass, or chase wildlife.
- they physically harm people directly or indirectly with their actions.
- they touch or jump on other people who have not invited interaction with the dog.