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Dog owners - pick-up!

Letter writer concerned by dog droppings, for a variety of reasons

The Millenium Poopway aka “The watch your step walkway” is potentially one of the nicest features of Castlegar. Unfortunately it is so full of "poo’ there that I no longer take my dog for fear of illness. At her advanced age the immune system is less strong. Mine too.

The south parking lot hasn’t been stocked with pick up bags since November. I stopped by city hall to ask that bags be stocked at the park but have not seen any there yet. Maybe handy bags and trash bins won't make people pick up but at least provide means and incentive. The walk along Nelson Lake front is equally bad or worse. 

The Vancouver Sun ran a great article on why it is so important to pick up after our dogs.
The article (originally taken from Maple Ridge Times) 
was published Sat March 24 2012 in Breaking News section page A7 titled: “Cases of potential fatal canine disease have spiked, vets say”

Why is picking up important?

Parvovirus is on the rise and it kills dogs, especially puppies.
"In outdoor conditions parvovirus can withstand freezing and last up to 7 months in the environment.
The resistant bug can live for months under the right conditions it has been known to survive on rugs, furniture, even food containers.”

Having your dog vaccinated each year and picking up after your dog will aid in preventing this potentially lethal virus from spreading. Our cherished older dogs are more at risk because of their weakened immune systems.

Humans are at risk too.

According to the Mayo Clinic web site; “Parvovirus infection is a common and highly contagious childhood ailment — sometimes called slapped-cheek disease because of the distinctive face rash that develops. Parvovirus infection also has been known as fifth disease because, historically, it was one of five common childhood illnesses characterized by a rash.

In most children, parvovirus infection is mild and requires little treatment. However, in some adults, the infection can be serious. Parvovirus infection in some pregnant women can lead to serious health problems for the fetus. Parvovirus infection is also more serious for people with some kinds of anemia or who have a compromised immune system.”

Picking up after your dog is not only a regulation under local bylaws, it is the responsible thing to do as a pet guardian and a member of the community. Like most things that are really important it’s simple and it only takes a moment of conscious thought and action.


-Deborah Wilson