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18 Easiest Way To Pick Up Dog Poop

Easiest Way To Pick Up Dog Poop

when you have a dog, there will come a day in which you’ll find yourself picking up their feces and placing it on the ground for them to do with what they please (or possibly even eating). It doesn’t make this any easier: You may feel like you’re going insane while doing so because you know how much better things could be if only you didn’t have pets. But here are 18 things to keep in mind when picking up dog poop.

1. Pick it up immediately

It might sound counterintuitive, but one thing you should try to avoid whenever possible is leaving a pile of poop out overnight. This can lead to infections from bacteria such as E coli and salmonella, plus illness from parasites. A lot of these germs live in our soil, and once poop sits around long enough, it makes its home in the dirt underneath, too. So unless you want to risk getting sick, get rid of the waste right away.

Also, take care to clean after every single use — even if you’re just putting down a little turd. The same goes for toilet paper. We usually think “it won’t hurt” when wiping ourselves after using the bathroom. However, fecal matter contains various types of viruses that can infect us through contact with the skin and eyes without ever entering our bloodstream.

2. Use a scoop or your hands

There are many ways to choose to remove dog poop. Some prefer scoops, others sticks, and still more simply whip out their hands. There isn’t really anything wrong with either choice, though I personally recommend sticking to scoops since those tend to be less messy than your hands. Scooping also keeps you safer by preventing you from having direct access to whatever disease-ridden crap your pup has been dishing out recently.

However, if you must pick poop up directly with your hands, wash thoroughly afterward. Even if you’re wearing rubber gloves, you can still end up transferring germs onto your fingers, potentially into cuts or open sores. Plus, hand washing is extremely important anyway, especially for children who aren’t old enough yet to understand why picking up poop is bad.

3. Take the time

If you’re lucky, you’ll see someone relieving themselves quickly while you walk past. In general, however, most owners spend several minutes taking a break from work or errands to stroll over and grab a handful of poopy grass. That means you need to set aside extra time each week to actually go to the trouble of cleaning up after your pet.

The best way to remember to do this is to create a habit. Set reminders throughout the day to head outside and check in on your pooch. Or put up signs near doors asking visitors to help dispose of trash. Most importantly, schedule regular walks during times when you know you’ll be alone and free of distractions.

4. Don’t be afraid of that poo!

People often freak out about seeing dog poop closeup, thinking it looks nasty. But fear of this stuff is probably worse for humans than actual exposure itself. Dogs rarely eat poop, despite what you’d assume (“I’m sure my dog eats poop,” you say), and therefore rarely ingest harmful pathogens. Unless you’ve seen firsthand evidence otherwise, you shouldn’t worry about it.

Of course, sometimes poop does look pretty gross. When that happens, don’t hesitate to wipe it off with a cloth or tissue — or, ideally, both — then throw it away. Remember, though, that you never truly know exactly where poop originated until you start digging deeper. For example, let’s say you used tissues instead of a proper disposal method. Then later, another human came along and picked up that very same piece of crud.

They would definitely have gotten infected, although it’s impossible to tell whether they were exposed via the initial transfer or later when handling the dirty tissues.

5. Be aware of where you’re walking

Most cities now require garbage cans next to public restrooms. While you’re inside, take advantage of this added convenience and place the bag full of poop there. Not only does this reduce the amount of effort required to handle the mess, but it also ensures nobody ends up stepping in it accidentally.

When you exit the restroom, turn left rather than right. Walk backwards toward the street, keeping the bag low so no cars hit it, and dump it into the nearest receptacle. If you’re walking somewhere with multiple bags available, consider throwing one in each direction.

6. Have some gloves handy

While you’re waiting for the perfect moment to empty the bag, slip on some latex or vinyl gloves. If you’re worried about sanitation, buy two pairs. One pair serves as backup in case something gets spilled or broken, while the second helps protect your clothes from any lingering remnants.

Don’t forget to wear shoes with good traction, too, in case you need to dig deep. Otherwise, you could step in something unpleasant and fall flat on your face. Also, don’t expect to be able to run back inside to change your outfit afterwards. Make sure everyone knows you’re headed outside to deal with the poo and bring extras of everything necessary: plastic grocery bags, gloves, disinfectant wipes, etc., in case anyone wants to join in.

7. Avoid picking up other people’s poop — or at least ask first

You wouldn’t believe how many people today approach me saying they found something disgusting and wanted to show it to me. Usually, they’re referring to another person’s stool. Nowadays, it seems like everybody thinks it’s perfectly okay to pluck up somebody else’s butt business.

But it’s not. To begin with, you can spread diseases without coming in physical contact with someone’s body. Second, it’s rude to invade other people’s personal space like that. And thirdly, there’s nothing stopping you from spreading poop back to whoever dropped it originally.

So always ask beforehand if it’s OK to touch something smelly or otherwise unsightly. If they refuse, move on and leave it behind. After all, it’s probably not worth risking infection to save money on groceries.

8. If all else fails, call for help

Sometimes you just can’t ignore piles of poop lying around. Maybe the owner was nowhere in sight, or perhaps you saw something suspicious about the size or smell of it. Whatever the reason, if you can’t bear the thought of picking it up yourself, reach out to a friend or family member. They’ll likely be happy to lend a helping paw. Just be sure to follow safety guidelines like wearing protective gear and avoiding prolonged contact.

And if you absolutely cannot stand dealing with animal waste, consider finding a service that picks up after your pets for a modest fee. Many professional services offer weekly pickups, saving you the hassle of making extra trips to the store.

9. Wash off as soon as possible

Once you finish disposing of the poop, rinse your hands well and scrub vigorously under warm water. Always dry completely by patting or rubbing with a towel. Never dunk. Doing so will force moisture further into cracks and crevices, increasing chances of contamination. Once finished drying, apply soap and rub your palms together to ensure no traces remain.

Afterward, give everything a thorough cleanse. All surfaces, objects, clothing, and hair should receive a bath. Wipe down floors/carpets/walks with disinfectant spray or wipes. Rinse dishes, pots, utensils, and counters with antibacterial cleaner. Finally, vacuum thoroughly, including furniture and hard floorboards.

10. Use a Shovel

If you’re going to use something other than your fingers, then go for a shovel. You don’t need fancy ones either – just any old garden tool is fine. If you have an old gardening hat lying around, even better. This method works best if there is some grass nearby since that makes scooping easier.

Also, if there are bigger chunks of feces involved, this might be helpful. However, remember that the smaller the pieces, the more likely they’ll break apart while being lifted into a bag. That means less time spent picking up after your pup.

11. A Fork

A fork may seem silly but it really does work well. First, grab hold of the poop between two knuckles (not too close together). Next, lift upwards as far as possible, keeping the handle straight. Be careful about bending over at all. Once you’ve got enough height, tip the entire contents onto a piece of paper towel. Now fold the paper towel once or twice until it’s large enough to hold everything. Finally, put the whole thing inside a plastic bag.

This seems simple enough, right? But sometimes dogs leave behind larger clumps which make it harder to get everything out via small forks. Fortunately, there are also larger versions available which aren’t quite as easy to grip…but still effective nonetheless.

12. Your Thumb and Finger

You may think using only your thumb and finger would be impossible but actually it isn’t hard at all. Simply take ahold of the poop between your index and middle fingernails. Lift upwards toward your palm. Make sure to keep your nails nice and neat otherwise you won’t manage very well.

Keep lifting until most of the stuff falls out. Repeat this process a few times, making sure to turn your hand slightly each time. And voilà! All done.

13. A Bucket or Trash Can

Trash cans used to belong solely to restaurants. Today though, many homeowners now choose them instead of leaving out buckets filled with water and soap scum. For those who live outside cities and towns, trash cans are great options for easily clearing away human excrement.

They come with lids already attached so simply set yours down where your dog has left its mess. Take the lid off and empty the garbage into a bin liner. At least in my neighborhood, I see people dumping every kind of animal waste imaginable from cats’ litter trays, fish guts, newspapers, cigarette filters, etc., along with lots of other random items. So whatever you decide to throw into the container, please consider first whether you’d rather find someone else’s feces next door or down the street.

14. A Plastic Bag

Plastic bags were developed for good reason. While we could theoretically carry our groceries home in baskets, carrying full laundry detergent washes wasn’t always practical. We needed special containers made specifically for such occasions.

After all, what happens if your basket gets tipped over during transport? In addition to falling onto the ground or pavement, your clothes and linens would probably end up everywhere. Not fun. With bags, however, spills couldn’t happen. Plus, these bags were designed to allow air flow through so that liquids didn’t pool within. As a result, laundry detergents contained bubbles. Great job, guys!

Well today, grocery stores sell tiny little zippered pouches called Ziplocs. These bags offer another solution for transporting wet goods. Since Ziplocs are sealed, nothing goes spilling out accidentally. In fact, you can place several of these into a box for moving heavy objects. By opening one side, you can pour liquid directly into toilet bowls. When finished, reseal the pouch(es) completely. Easy peasy.

15. A Basket

Forgot to bring your basket? Don’t worry. There are plenty of places to shop locally that specialize in selling household products. One example I know of is Target. Some of these retailers let customers store shopping carts overnight in front of the building. Sure beats driving home with your purchases and risking getting a ticket.

Another option is to check out thrift shops. Yes, they exist and they often stock piles of secondhand merchandise. Most of the time, this includes bins that were originally intended for storing items purchased online. Because these boxes tend to be sturdy and durable, you wouldn’t want to dump anything into them before taking them home. Instead, wait until you arrive home to unpack your new additions and fill ’em with your unwanted purchases.

Speaking of buying online, here are 9 Ways to Save Money Shopping Online.

16. A Trunk Or Box

What if you travel a lot for work? Does your car contain a trunk big enough to fit a carton of eggs or a suitcase holding clothing? Of course not. Luckily, there are lots of companies dedicated to providing storage solutions for vehicles. Many of these offer bins specially fitted for specific types of cargo.

Others provide flatbed trailers capable of accommodating furniture. Still others supply locking compartments that will protect valuables from thieves. If you drive a truck, SUV, van, minivan, or station wagon, chances are you’ll find exactly what your vehicle needs.

Now obviously, if you plan to purchase a pre-made crate for shipping packages overseas, you should consult a customs broker first. Otherwise, it shouldn’t cost much money to buy a custom crate.

17. Just Throw It Away!

Sometimes the simplest answers are the best. If you can’t possibly imagine ever wanting to touch dog poop again, then maybe all you need is to open a window and toss it out. If you want to avoid stepping barefoot in unsightly messes, invest in a pair of booties. Better yet, wear flip flops.

18. Pet Waste Scooper/Bagger

These devices combine both functions into one handy unit. Basically, they include a long pole with a scoop on the bottom and a bag attachment at the top. Some models even have handles that bend at 90 degrees, allowing you to grasp it with both hands. Another variation comes equipped with a vacuum cleaner motor mounted near the base.

There are pros and cons associated with these contraptions. On the positive side, they’re portable and relatively inexpensive. Unfortunately, they require regular maintenance to prevent malfunction. On occasion, pets may deposit fecal matter onto the floor unexpectedly. When this occurs, remove it immediately and wipe it up.

Never forget to replace the bag once you finish emptying it. Failure to do so could lead to serious infection. Lastly, owners must ensure that areas surrounding their house remain free of odors.

Dogs frequently eliminate urine near flower beds, bushes, trees, shrubs, sidewalks, pools, ponds, lakes, streams, fences, garages, porches, and patios. Even worse, raccoons love to dig latrines under foundations, in basements, underneath cars, in crawl spaces, under sheds, and in yards.

In short, unless you’re willing to deal with unpleasant smells, stick with scoopers and trash bags.

We hope you found the above tips useful. Remember that everyone picks up poop differently so feel free to experiment and figure out what suits your lifestyle best.

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