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Bart and Lee Ann Barczynski
Whistlers five ton challenge
The other day as I scraped dog crap off my two-year-olds shoes for the third time in two days, I asked myself what is the problem here? My rough guess is that there are over 2,000 dogs living and visiting Whistler on any given day. Even a small dog is capable of creating 2 pounds of feces every single day and large breeds (most common in Whistler) deposit up to 5 pounds. That means 10,000 pounds of crap is being dumped on our parks, yards, trails, roads, and playgrounds every day. That means more than 3 million pounds per year!
Depending on the time of year and how much bioactivity is happening in the ground, it can take over three months to break down naturally, which leaves 90,000 pounds lying around at any given time to step in, roll over or worse.
The Muni is doing its part; they have free scoop dispensers at all high traffic areas, garbage bins always within a short walking distance and bylaws that require owners to pick up after their animals.
So why all the mess? I would be a hypocrite to deny it, every dog walker has left the odd one behind because of time constraints, a lack of scoop, soft stools, or no one was watching, but I think this has become more than the odd one left "behind". The problem we have is a lack of respect for other outdoor users, if no one is watching right now that does not mean some kids wont be waiting for the bus in the same spot tomorrow.
I have witnessed highly recognizable dog owners in Whistler turn a blind eye to their dogs duty. P.F. is a modern miracle, able to ride his bike with two blind eyes as his dog has two dumps at a playground full of children. The nice girl at the veterinary clinic with two dogs of her own seemed oblivious to her dogs pile as she waited to cross the highway. Even the avalanche dog handler bound by a code of ethics has been caught with his err, dogs pants down, so to speak.