Mary Cocklin’s annual spring letters to the editor continue to remind pet owners that cleaning up dog poop every day makes for a much nicer breakup (ADN, March 10). Clearly, many still don’t think ahead to the cumulative impact that all that poop has as winter recedes. It mixes with melt water and runs off into local creeks and lakes where Anchoragites like to spend time fishing, kayaking, tubing, swimming and wading.
What does pet waste carry in it? Billions of fecal coliform and other bacteria, viruses, and parasites which can infect humans and their pets. Think about that next time you or one of your children or pets is wading around in our fecal coliform impaired waterways!
As she also noted, there are pet waste stations (Anchorage Waterways Council has documented more than 150 in parks and along trails) which provide free pet waste bags. Finally, besides Mary’s unselfish act of picking up poop left behind by others, there are other people out there — many not even pet owners themselves — who do the same. Why? Because they care about clean parks, trails, sidewalks, and waterways, and they are doing their part where others have neglected to do theirs.
Please be more diligent about cleaning up after your pets. Remember, the MOA estimates that about 20 tons of pet waste hits the ground every day.
— Cherie Norton
Anchorage Waterways Council
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