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How to Clean Dog Poop From Yard

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For many homeowners, scooping poop isn’t an enjoyable task. But, if you fail to pick after your dog, the waste can accumulate, turning your yard into a smelly, ugly mess.

The downside to having a dirty backyard is that it acts as a breeding ground for bacteria. In addition, if your furry friend steps on the poop while walking in your backyard, he will ingest some of that material while licking his paws and/or bring it into your house.

Timely removing your dog’s feces will protect you and your loved ones from diseases transmitted through the dog’s feces, such as Toxocariasis.

There are many options available to clean dog poop from your yard, including composters, poop scoopers, and the traditional doggie bag. However, you can make your cleaning routine more effortless by training your dog to poop in a specific location.

So, are you having trouble picking after your dog? This in-depth guide shares insights on the best approaches to cleaning your dog’s poop from your backyard. 

Create a Cleaning Routine

To keep your yard clean and safe, create a cleanup schedule and stay committed to it. If possible, try cleaning your dog’s waste during the daytime.

If you try spotting fecal matter with a flashlight at night, you may end up stepping on it mistakenly. Additionally, you need to follow a specific pattern to help you find the dog’s poop with ease.  

This is important, especially in autumn and spring when there are plenty of accumulated leaves and debris.

Begin by mentally subdividing your yard into strips of about two square meters. It would help if you then began scanning the ground by walking down one of the rows of your backyard.

Once you are done walking the entire length of one row, turn around and move to the one adjacent to it.  When you come across dog waste, scoop it with a dog scooper or doggie bag over hand, then drop it in the trash bag.

Scooping Poop

The EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) considers dog waste a non-point source pollutant, and it’s categorized together with insecticides, herbicides, and other toxic chemicals.

So, when cleaning dog poop from your yard, ensure that you place it in a specially designed dog trash bag before tossing it in the trash.

When picking the poop, you can use the trash bag as a glove by turning it inside out. You should then enter your hands in the bag, grab the dog waste, and pull the sides of the bag down so that its exterior wraps around the fecal matter.

Finally, tie it and dispose of it properly. In cases where you have to pick several dog wastes, wear disposable gloves and scoop your dog waste using a paper towel, then drop it in the trash bag.

Dog Scooper

dog scooper

There are plenty of scooper options available in the market, but the right design should have an end that features a spade or clamp.

This way, when you pull the handle, it should close around the poop, making it easier to scoop the waste in a trash bag for disposal. Still, you can consider investing in a pooper scooper design that comes with a trash bag.

Such scoopers allow direct deposit of dog waste without having to put it in yourself. Furthermore, they can scoop poop on grass and concrete as well.

Poop Freezing Spray

Collecting dog waste that’s softened due to rain or diarrhea can be a challenge. Poop freezing agents that feature aerosolized oxygen can help when the dog poop is too soft to pick up easily.

You need to hold the spray nozzle about one inch from the pet waste then spray over its surface for at least three seconds. This will make the fecal matter solidify, making it easier to pick.

Remember that if you’re to collect the dog poop by hand, give it a few seconds after you have sprayed before picking it up.

Getting An Additional Trash Can

trash can

If the trash service in your area doesn’t collect garbage frequently, the chances are that your dog waste will stink in your backyard even when wrapped in bags, which is quite common during summer.

One way to solve this concern is by purchasing a smaller but separate trash can to keep your pet waste.

Make sure that it comes with a lid with a liner inside, and only empty the waste in a large trash can when it’s ready for collection.

Pet Waste Digester

waste digester

If you’re looking to turn your dog’s feces into biodegradable liquid, you must invest in a pet waste digester. Using this device is easy. All you have to do is put the dog poop inside, add warm water and digestive agents.

Remember that the digestive agent or water you’ll need to use will depend on the type of pet digester you own.

The installation of the waste digester is also easy. All you have to do is dig about one foot deep and wide hole in your backyard.

This will allow your dog’s liquefied waste to be released slowly in your yard without having to form a pool on the grass. However, you should stick to the manufacturer’s direction on using the waste digester.

Timely Waste Removal is Important

If you have many dogs or a small yard, and you are at your home most of the time, you should remove dog waste as soon as they poop. One way to be sure that your dog has pooped is to monitor its outdoor time.

If you are in a hurry and cannot immediately remove your dog’s waste, ensure that you have it sprayed with fly insecticide to avoid flies.

You should not spray on the poop if you plan on releasing your dog in the backyard. Additionally, if you have children, ensure that the dog’s waste is cleaned immediately or once a day, but have them stay indoors until the poop is collected.

Always Watch Out Where You’re Going

Keeping any mess off your shoes should be a top priority when cleaning your dog’s poop off your backyard. Besides the difficulty in cleaning the poop off your shoes, it can prove challenging scooping the poop in the bag.

Furthermore, you should never wear sunglasses when you scoop dog waste because some lenses make it difficult to see dog’s poop on the grass.

Consider Turning Your Dog Waste Into Fertilizer

Your dog waste isn’t a great source of fertilizer in its natural state because it might have harmful bacteria. However, there are different kits available in the market that can help ferment your dog’s waste, leaving you with nutrient-rich soil.

The process will require adding dog waste, water, and fermentative accelerant in a small bucket. Once the bucket is full, dig a hole in your yard, pour the resulting mixture in, and add soil, then leave the mixture for two weeks.

This is enough time for your dog waste to be turned into healthy soil. However, you should never use dog waste fertilizer on food crops.

Exercise Caution When Flushing Your Dog Poop

Many cities have banned the flushing of pet waste in human toilets because the wastewater system cannot properly process it.

If you aren’t sure if you can flush dog waste in your city, ensure that you check with your municipal waste department or local health department. If your city water waste system allows pet waste, ensure that you invest in flushable poop bags.

These are important because they are designed to break down whenever they get in contact with water. If you use bags that aren’t flushable, you could be creating a bigger problem with your home septic system.

Learn Right Approaches to Cleaning and Disposing Dog Poop

When cleaning up your dog’s poop, there are different disposal approaches you should never use because of environmental and health concerns.

For instance, leaving out fecal droppings during cleanup brings a foul smell and attracts flies in the warm months. In addition, dog waste contains bacteria that may be harmful to dogs and people who eventually touch the poop.

It’s also possible for your dog’s waste to end up in the local water sources, especially if swept into storm drains during the rainy season.

It is also not recommended to compost dog waste as it won’t get hot enough to break parasites and bacteria. Additionally, burying your dog’s waste can contaminate groundwater which ultimately leads to water-borne diseases.

Wrapping up

By timely removing dog poop, you’ll reduce the chances of diseases transmitted through feces and keep your home cleaner.

To effectively remove dog poop, you need to set a routine that works with you and source the necessary tools like a pooper scooper, paper towel, gloves, and dog poop bags.

Also, make sure that you properly sanitize the area using a disinfectant to remove odors and kill viruses and bacteria. Finally, ensure you dispose of the poop in the most hygienic method as discussed above.

There are other things you can do in your yard for you four legged friends, so don’t forget to check out our articles on dog fences, and what you can do to provide them shade.

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Jena Slocum Co-Founder

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