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Spring is here; it’s time to Scoop the Poop

Spring break-up means it's time to scoop the poop.
Spring break-up means it's time to scoop the poop.(ktuu)
Published: Apr. 5, 2021 at 5:54 PM AKDT
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ANCHORAGE, Alaska (KTUU) - Emerging dog waste is a sign of spring and never a pleasant one at local dog parks. It’s why the Anchorage Waterways Council is planning a community “Scoop the Poop” event to get a handle on the mess some dog owners leave behind.

“One of the problems that we are having now is that people are getting out more,” said Cherie Northon, executive director of the Waterways Council. “Particularly with the COVID pandemic, they like to be outside, which is great, it’s a healthy place to be. But they also need to be aware of the impacts their dogs are making on the waterways.”

Many Anchorage waterways have issues with high fecal coliform levels, which Northon suspects come mainly from waste that invariably ends up in the water system through storm drains and other run-off. Part of the problem, she said, is that Anchorage has a lot of dogs.

“They estimate 65,000 dogs are in the municipality,” she said…. “Which translates to 22 tons of pet waste on the ground every day. Not weeks, months, years — every day. So every piece that gets picked up contributes to cleaner water.”

On Monday, Northon was putting up a sign at Goose Lake reminding people to pick up after their pets. The sign read “Children Swim Here”.

The community Scoop the Poop event is scheduled for Saturday, April 17 at both Conner’s Bog and University Lake Dog Parks from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Northon said supplies will be provided for anyone who wants to help in the clean-up.

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