10 Of The Best Ways To Pick Up Dog Poop, & 5 Best Ways To Dispose Of It

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The best way to pick up dog poop will vary depending on how you want to pick it up, and whether you’re around the house or yard, or out walking.

Light, portable and disposable bags are the best option when out walking, whilst you might want something more cost effective and sturdy around the house.

In terms of disposing of dog poop, the most common way to do it is to put it in your regular household trash, and let it go to landfill – but, there are other ways worth exploring.

When we say ‘dispose of dog poop’, we mean where it goes once you’ve picked it up/cleaned it up and disposed of it. 

Below is a list of the 10 most effective and commonly used pick up methods, and also 5 of the most common disposal methods.

Hopefully you find some methods that suit your needs and preference.

Let’s jump into it!

 

(NOTE: this is a general information guide only, and is not professional advice, or a substitute for professional advice. A qualified vet or animal expert is the only person qualified to give you expert advice in regards to your pet/s)

 

Best Ways To Pick Up, & Dispose Of Dog Poop 

 

Best Ways To Pick Up Dog Poop

1. Standard Dog Poop Bag 

Most people know this one – use standard dog poop bags.

Plastic dog poop bags are not only bad for the environment because of how long they take to break down, but when plastic gets into the sea, it can cause huge problems for ocean animals.

Biodegradable and compostable bags can be better if they have access to aeration to break down properly, but this rarely happens in most landfill sites.

 

How Do You Use Them?

Put your hand inside the bag like a glove, pick up the dog poop, turn the bag inside out so the poop is now on the inside of the bag, and tie it up.

With cheaper bags, the poop has been known to sometimes slip through a hole or split in the bag seams onto the fingers, so be gentle and only use bags that haven’t split. Bags with 2 ply material and side seams as opposed to bottom seams can also be good.

Poop bags are great for walks – they are light and can be carried in your pocket or tied to your leash.

 

One of the more popular dog poop and waste bags on the market at the moment is:

You can read more about each here in this guide about how to pick up dog poop without touching it.

NOTE: if you want a biodegradable option, you might like to check the My Alpha Pet Dog Poop Bags (on Amazon)  that are ASTM D6400 Certified (USA) and EN13432 Certified (EU), and break down and decompose in just 90 days.

 

Two other options are:

Bio Bag Premium Pet Waste Bags (on Amazon) , which is made with resins derived from plants and vegetable among other things. In 2017, they are BPI certified to meet the ASTM D6400 specification.

Flush Puppies Doodie Bags (on Amazon)  which meet the ASTM d6400 standard and California law for “composability” claims, and are certified compostable by the biodegradable products institute (BPI).

 

2. Mutt Mitt Dog Waste Pick Up Bag

A mutt mitt is designed specifically for picking up dog poop. They are designed to be strong, thick, have plenty of room, easy to turn out and tie out, and easy to dispose.

 

How Do You Use Them?

Same as a regular poop bag, except Mutt Mitts will probably feel bigger in terms of capacity, and slightly thicker.

They are good for dog walks.

You can check out the Mutt Mitt Dog Waste Pick Up Bag (on Amazon) .

 

3. Pooper Scooper

I’ve always thought the name Pooper Scooper sounds funny, don’t you?

 

How Do You Use Them?

Pooper scoopers remind me of those extendable plastic claw toys I used to play with as a kid with the squeeze handles.

To use them simply squeeze the handle which opens up the scoop, scoop up the poop, the scoop will shut, and deposit it in an area of the yard where it can decompose, or put it in the bin.

You can then put it in your main trash bin, or get a little pet waste bin like the Behrens Locking Lid Pet Waste Can (on Amazon)  if you want to keep all the pet waste by itself and away from the main trash

Pooper scoopers are really only for the home and yard though because they can’t be carried on walks.

Pooper scoopers are better for dry dog poop as cleaning wet dog poop that has dried to the scoop is not fun.

A cheap and affordable 32 inch arm pooper scooper is the Arm and Hammer 71034 Swivel Bin and Rake (on Amazon) .

 

4. Short Handle Dust Pan with Rake

When I lived with my parents they used to have a short handle dust pan for picking up the dog poop from the front and back yards (pans are obviously very cheap and easily available).

There was also a rake to rake it into the pan.

 

How Do You Use Them?

Simply scoop the poop up manually with the pan and rake, with the pan and dispose of it in a compost area or in the bin.

You get more control with a short handle dust pan than a pooper scooper, but you also get closer to the poop.

Pooper scoopers are better for dry dog poop as cleaning wet dog poop that has dried to the scoop is not fun.

More for dry dog poop.

 

5. Flushable Dog Poop Bag

Another type of dog poop bag, but these ones you can flush in your toilet.

Two important things to note with flushing dog poop –

1. Make sure its legal in your area

and 2. Make sure the dog poop bag meets the laws in your area in terms of being suitable for flushing.

The last thing you want is to create a safety issue by bringing dog poop into a human area, to break the law or to clog your toilet.

 

How Do You Use Them?

They are a poop bag, that you pick up the poop with by hand, and turn inside out and tie up, and either flush or throw away like a regular poop bag.

The Flush Puppies Doodie Bags (on Amazon)  we mentioned above are also supposed to be flushable.

 

6. Dog Poop Shovel

You can buy dog poop shovels from pet stores or a regular small plastic or metal shovel from a hardware store.

Shovels are essentially the same as a pooper scooper except they have a flat shovel end instead of a scoop.

 

How Do You Use Them?

Exactly how you would use regular shovel except you pick up the poop instead of digging into the dirt.

 

7. Litter Tray

More so for cats, but some people, like people living in apartments for example with smaller dogs might train their dog to use a litter tray.

 

How Do You Use Them?

Your dog poops in the litter tray and you empty it into a bin or disposal area as required.

Something like the Puppy Go Here Indoor Litter Tray (on Amazon)  might be a good option

 

8. Re-Used or Re-Purposed Paper and Material

Do you always seem to have newspaper or those annoying flyers, shopping brochures, and general marketing/sales mail laying around the house?

It’s not really ideal compared to a poop bag, but in an emergency or if you have nothing else, it will work.

You could also use vegetable, fruit and other bags you’ve picked up from your shopping and were planning to throw out.

 

How Do You Use Them?

Wrap/cover/pick up the poop with the paper or material and dispose of it.

This is probably only good for yard and house pick ups because you obviously can’t seal the poop, so it’s not good for walks.

 

9. Dog Poop Auger

There is a company out there that made a dog poop auger power tool.

 

How Do You Use Them?

 It is designed to automatically suck up the poop with no mess and without the need for plastic bags.

In reality though, it doesn’t seem to really work. Probably pass on this one.

Plus, you can’t carry them on walks with you.

 

10. Call a Home Cleaning Person

Don’t want to pick the poop up or clean it up yourself? Call a home cleaning services person.

 

How Do You Use Them?

Call them once a week to pick up the dog poop from your front and back yard.

 

Other Guides On Picking Up Dog Poop

How To Pick Up Dog Poop Without Touching It

How To Pick Up Poop Without Gagging

How To Pick Up Dog Poop Without Plastic Bags

Flushable vs Biodegradable vs Compostable vs Plastic Dog Poop Bags Comparison, & Which Is Best

 

Best Ways To Dispose Of Dog Poop

1. Common Trash Bins & Landfill

This is the most common way to dispose of dog poop in most developed countries across the world.

Poop is picked up with a poop bag (if on a walk), or a shovel or pooper scooping (if in the yard).

Once you place your dog’s poop in the trash (you can either put it in the main trash bin, or get a pet waste bin like the Behrens Locking Lid Pet Waste Can (on Amazon)  if you want to keep all the pet waste by itself and away from the main trash), it gets taken to landfill sites that accept pet waste with the other waste.

The big problems with disposing dog poop in landfill are:

1) Not every landfill site accepts dog waste

2) Landfill does not give environmentally friendly dog poop bags like biodegradable and compostable bags the opportunity to decompose as designed.

These bags need an aerobic environment to break down, and they don’t get that when trapped layers deep under other rubbish.

Adding further issues – these bags actually produce methane when trapped under landfill – which is not great for the air and ozone layer

3) Most people use plastic dog poop bags – and plastic takes an estimated 500-1000 years to break down in the environment in landfill sites.

Plastic also can harm or kill animals if it gets tangled around them or stuck inside them, and when plastic breaks down – it produces micro polymers which are toxic.

 

2. Composting Dog Poop – Residential or Industrial

Composting dog poop is another option.

Composting can be residential i.e. in someone’s backyard, or industrial (public composting sites).

In reality, most industrial composting facilities don’t accept pet waste for two reasons:

1. Dog poop contains harmful bacteria and pathogens and a range of other nasties – processing this poop and adding it to the compost mix can be a big risk for health and safety

2. Dog poop bags can contaminate the existing compost environment and mix – it’s easier just to say no to pet waste for them

When composting dog poop, any dog poop bag must be 100% compostable so that it doesn’t contaminate the other compostable material or disrupt the compost conditions.

You can read more about what compostable dog poop bags are, the requirements and pros and cons of compostable bags are in this guide.

You may also like to read about biodegradable dog poop bags which are a different type of bag.

 

3. Flushing Dog Poop

Flushing dog poop in the toilet minimises a lot of the landfill and plastic poop bag problems.

However, it also introduces a few other issues:

1) The first is that dog poo contains all sorts of nasties and pathogens – bringing the poop inside introduces health and safety concerns like contaminating your house or bathroom

Another option rather than flushing down your toilet is to install a pet waste sewer inlet/outlet at your sewer IP point where you can empty pet waste directly into the sewer system – but this can take time, costs money and you need the design to be reliable.

2) Flushable bags might not clog your toilet, but they might clog up the sewer system further down the line if they don’t dissolve enough.

Clearing them from the sewer debris trap can be costly for governments!

3) If there is a sewer overflow because of a natural event or there’s an issue with the pipes/surrounding infrastructure – the dog poop can pollute and contaminate soil, waterways and even drinking water sources

4) If you have a septic tank, flushing dog poop is generally not recommended

You can read more about flushing dog poop and flushable dog poop bags here.

 

4. Dog/Pet Sewer Drain Attachment

There are specially designed Dog Sewer Waste Line Attachments you can buy and install – but they don’t suit everyone.

The reliability and design of the individual pet waste systems can vary, and a poorly designed one can be troublesome unless you know exactly what you are doing or looking for.

However, some people do find they work for them if they have considered all the different factors involved in installation, design and discharge.

An example of a Dog/Pet Sewer Drain is the Doggie Doo Drain Dog Waste Sewer Line Attachment (on Amazon)

 

5. Is Recycling An Option?

We are not talking about recycling the poop, but rather the poop bags.

The unfortunate thing is that plastic poop bags in most circumstances can’t be recycled.

The reasons for this are:

1) Cleaning the bags is time consuming and overall too difficult

2) Recycling machines are designed to handle clean, but also hard plastic (bottles, containers etc.), and dog poop bags are too soft – they would get caught in the machine.

 

Making Dog Poop Disposal More Eco Friendly

We put together this guide which outlines some ways dog poop disposal might become more eco friendly.

 

 

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