The Salmon Arm Wharf is one of the areas in Salmon Arm where some dog owners have a tendency to not pick up their dog’s poop. (Carli Berry/Black Press)

Dog poop piling up on public paths and trails

Shuswap/Okanagan dog owners reminded of the health and environmental hazards of letting poop lie

Dogs are pooping freely in several Salmon Arm parks, with some owners leaving it at that.

“I get complaints, and the number of complaints have gone way up on the wharf, Little Mountain, Blackburn and Klahani – way up from last year,” says Jason Chernoff, Salmon Arm’s supervisor of parks, referring to dog feces on the ground.

The dog park in Klahani is better than it was, but the problems there are beyond its fences, on the ball diamonds and elsewhere, he says.

Even when the doggy bags the city provides at the entrance to parks are used, sometimes the full bags are chucked into the forest, left on the trails and, strangely, even tied up in trees.

Related: Peeved about poop

To reinforce the need for pet owners to clean up after their dogs, the city has increased its fees to match those of the Columbia Shuswap Regional District. The fine for ‘failure to remove excrement’ has jumped from $25 to $100.

While dog poop can be stinky and yucky to step in, it’s also a potential hazard to health and the environment, says Mary Bermudez, someone who is very familiar with the subject.

Bermudez owns Poo Worx in Kelowna, which provides clean-up services to the City of Kelowna and outlying communities, including to individual dog owners.

As a former project manager in land development in Saskatchewan, Bermudez returned to Kelowna and decided to move in a new direction – becoming an “entrepooneur,” she jokes.

As a dog lover she was concerned about the diseases that dog feces can spread to dogs as well as humans. The Canadian Public Health Association lists nine human diseases that can be transmitted by dog poop, including E. Coli and Giardia.

Related: Salmon Arm consuming dog poop bags by the thousands

Before the snow arrived last year, Poo Worx went to the parks generating the most complaints for the City of Kelowna. At Paul’s Tomb Trail in Knox Mountain Park, for instance, three of her scoopers and a vehicle picked up seven or eight five-liter buckets of dog waste.

Bermudez would like to launch an educational campaign reminding people that dog poop can be toxic. “That feces you leave might make another dog sick.”

Not only that, it can harm the environment. It can ultimately end up in streams and ponds and, once there, can help create algae because of its thirst for oxygen.

“That’s what really, really was the driver for me. If people knew the damage dog waste does, they’d think twice about just leaving it there.”


@SalmonArm
marthawickett@saobserver.net

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

COLUMN: Much to enjoy at Ryga Arts Festival

As I learn about George Ryga and his contributions, it is clear why this festival carries his name

Art and music at Summerland Ornamental Gardens

Second event of the summer will be held Sunday, Aug. 25

New Penticton/Kelowna transit route ready to roll out

Route 70 Penticton/Kelowna will provide a direct trip to Kelowna from Penticton and Summerland

South Okanagan powwow strikes a chord on the human level for federal minister

Canada’s Minister of Indigenous Services Seamus O’Regan was the special guest at powwow

Summerland’s downtown has gone through numerous changes

Main Street has been commercial hub of community for many years

VIDEO: Could we BE any more excited? ‘Friends’ fans go crazy for merch

Movie theatres will show select episodes to mark the NBC series’ 25th anniversary

Penticton man sentenced in non-fatal 2017 shooting

Elkena Michael Knauff sentenced to seven and a half months in jail

Bodies of two missing Surrey men found near Ashcroft

Ryan Provencher and Richard Scurr have been missing since July 17

Kamloops RCMP locate and arrest man who fled from police

The 22-year-old male was wanted in relation to a domestic violence investigation

Five hedgehogs quickly adopted after being left at BC SPCA

Lucky new owners picked up their pets from Maple Ridge branch on Aug. 20

Okanagan RCMP superintendent helps with arrest

Vernon Supt. Shawna Baher arrests man for theft; turns out to be suspect in assault and robbery

Kelowna man arrested after allegedly setting blaze near Fire Department

The man was allegedly seen lighting bushes on fire near the Kelowna Fire Department

B.C. cricket players get interrupted by racist remark

Community has had protocols in place for years to respond to prejudice

Most Read