Columbia Parks says some pet owners put city in "crappy situation"

Officials from Columbia Parks and Recreation said many pet owners are not picking up after their furry friends do their business in public places.

Columbia Parks and Recreation posted a list of excuses people give for not picking up after their furry friends do their business while out an about.

Park Planner Janet Godon said those excuses are not going to cut it.

Godon said the issue stretches city wide. People are not picking up the poo when they are at a park, on a trail, walking downtown, or in neighborhoods. She said statistically 40 percent of people do not pick up after their dogs. However, she really wants that to change.

""It's yucky," she said. "We all get that... but it's really a health issue. We have a lot of families and young kids who use our parks and trails. No one wants to step in that and bring it into their home."

Many of Columbia's parks have pet waste bag dispensers. These dispense plastic bags for the public's use. However, Godon said the city relies completely on donations to fill those dispensers, and it is supposed to be used in instances when park-goers forget their own bags.

There is a city ordinance which requires pet owners to pick up after their pets. Owners can be fined for not following this ordinance if caught by an animal control officer.

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