make WWAY your homepage  Become a fan on facebook  Follow us on twitter  Receive RSS Newsfeeds  MEMBERS: Register | Login

Steps being taken to keep animal waste from polluting our waterways

READ MORE: Steps being taken to keep animal waste from polluting our waterways
waste300.jpg
Most of us know, animal waste is a nuisance on the ground. But what you may not know is that it is one of the main pollutants to our waterways. Municipalities are taking steps to make sure dog walkers clean up. On a busy day, Jennifer Wilkins walks about 12 to 15 dogs. As a professional pet sitter, she picks up after each pup. "If for whatever reason the customer does not provide me bags, I always bring my own. You have to pick it up because of the environment," said Wilkins, owner of Best Buddies Pet Sitting. With 26,000 registered dogs in New Hanover County, 10 tons of animal waste is produced each day. If left on the ground, it runs off in to our waterways. "Our creeks where people fish, people swim, people's kids wade in the water and it can cause serious health impacts," Cape Fear coast keeper Mike Giles. The Town of Wrightsville Beach is not taking this problem sitting down. In mid-April, it imposed a $250 fine for pet owners who do not clean up after their pet. What's more, walkers can be fined if they don't carry a bag, even if the dog does not do its business. Since the ordinance was adopted, animal control has written two dozen citations. Wrightsville Beach Town Manager Bob Simpson said, "A message is being sent. The problem lies with some of our residents too who just don't follow the rules, and know them." Nita Neumeister is a dog owner. Nita, Chachi and Chi Chi know the rules. "The bags are right there. They're supplied and people should carry it, they should pick up after themselves," said Nueumeister. Right now, there are not a lot of rules governing pet waste. The City of Wilmington is also considering tightening its rules. Currently, dog owners have to pick up after their pet in public parks. City council is looking to adopt an ordinance that would add any public space. Violators would incur a $250 fine.

Disclaimer: Comments posted on this, or any story are opinions of those people posting them, and not the views or opinions of WWAY NewsChannel 3, its management or employees. You can view our comment policy here.

»

COULD

SOMEONE PLEASE instruct the millions of birds, bear, deer, foxes, raccoons, opossums, TO PLEASE deposit their waste in the nearest receptacle..they are polluting our waterways! THE NERVE!

I'm trying to learn why pet

I'm trying to learn why pet waste matters verses wild animals and found this article:

http://www.wilmingtonnc.gov/portals/0/documents/Public%20Services/Stormw...

Thinking this through...

I seem to think that when NC had a lot more wildlife and a lot of undeveloped land, we had clean, clear uncontaminated streams b/c the waste was able to be naturally infiltrated into the ground. Flash forward to A LOT of development and hard surfaces (i.e. roads, parking lots, sidewalks) and A LOT of people, pets and animals and now you have a recipe for a uncollected pet waste washing away not being able to soak into the ground and therefore contaminating our waterways. I think the best thing to do is be a responsible pet owner and pick up after your pet. Especially since it is a source of pollution you CAN control. Unless of course, you want to drink, swim, fish, surf and eat shellfish in water contaminated by bacteria...