A letter writer wonders what to do about doggie-doo now that Surrey’s new Rethink Waste Collection Program is underway.

Perplexed over proper poop procedure

I’m all for a more efficient trash management system, but what is a pet owner to do with animal waste?

While I am completely on  board with the new waste management program, I am totally stunned that there hasn’t been more information provided to the tens of thousands of pet owners about how to dispose of their pet waste.

Let’s face it, those of us that own dogs all “poop and scoop” in our own backyards and deposit the poop bag in our garbage cans. Likewise, when we take our dogs to the park, we poop and scoop and deposit the bag in the receptacles provided at the park. And just to make it even easier, many of these parks also provide the poop bags.

I now read in the literature provided with my new waste management carts that I am not allowed to deposit pet waste in the (green) organics cart or the (black) garbage cart, and honestly who would put it into their (blue) recycle cart, so what on Earth am I supposed to do with it?

I have thoroughly read the guidelines provided at www.metrovancouver.org that Surrey residents are being referred to for more information about disposing pet waste. The Metro Vancouver website gives us the following options: compost it, flush it, bury it, start a worm farm, or call a pet waste collection service.

In the spirit of doing the right thing, I went right down to Petsmart to buy a Doggy Dooly waste system (basically a composter designed for dog waste) only to be told they don’t carry this item (although it was referred to on the Metro Vancouver website). I checked online and found dog waste units available from the U.S. ranging in price from about $40 up to $150. Add another $25 for shipping, etc. to Canada, dig a hole in my backyard for the dog waste unit (not near anywhere you grow food), buy some special composting powder, and presto, problem solved!

If I  don’t want to go to all of this expense, and I don’t really, I can dig a hole in my backyard, fashion some kind of a cover for it, buy the composting powder somewhere in Surrey, or online if necessary, and once again, presto, problem solved.

Now, while I am going to all of this effort, I am wondering about where all of the poop bags that are deposited in the park receptables are going, and why can’t my poop bags go in the same place? I am also wondering about all of the pet owners who dwell in apartments, townhouses and condos that do not have access to a backyard – are they going to start digging holes in the boulevards to compost their beloved pets’ waste?

I’m all for a more efficient waste management system, but I’m afraid the city has overlooked this issue. What is a pet owner to do?


Barbara Porth, Surrey

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