What Is the Proper Etiquette for Cleaning-Up After My Dog on a Walk?

by Victoria Lee Blackstone
    Picking up after your dog keeps the parks clean while reducing infection risk.

    Picking up after your dog keeps the parks clean while reducing infection risk.

    Hemera Technologies/AbleStock.com/Getty Images

    When it comes to taking your canine companion out for a walk, the inevitable always happens -- that familiar squatting posture that reveals a smelly present. While stopping him once the action starts is not an option, there is certain etiquette to follow when it comes to this situation.

    Public Parks, Trails and Dog Parks

    Many public locations, such as neighborhood parks, trails and dog parks, offer poop stations that provide small, disposable bags for quick cleanup. When your pooch delivers a present, be considerate and pick it up for proper disposal. No one likes to take a nice afternoon stroll through the park only to have it ruined when you land in an unsuspecting pile.

    Neighborhood Walks

    While your neighborhood probably does not offer poop disposal bags or stations, bringing along old plastic grocery bags or purchased poop bags allows you to clean up your dog’s business off the sidewalk or your neighbor’s lawn.


    While stepping in a pile that a dog owner left behind is definitely a way to ruin your day, picking up after your dog is also a way to keep your dog and others safe. Many canine infections spread through contact with feces. While your dog may not be infected, others out for a walk might. Following simple etiquette helps reduce the risk of infections between dogs.

    Photo Credits

    • Hemera Technologies/AbleStock.com/Getty Images

    About the Author

    Victoria Lee Blackstone is a horticulturist who propagates heirloom and native plants for her nursery. She has authored research-based scientific/technical papers, plant care sheets and magazine and newspaper articles. Blackstone studied botany and microbiology at Clemson University and is a former University of Georgia Extension Master Gardener Coordinator.

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