6.4 min readBy Published On: April 24th, 2018Categories: Features23 Comments on The Scoop on Poop

It has become obvious in my neighborhood that people are tired of dog poop.  Signs stating this fact have popped up all over the block where I live and the sentiment of the signs are all the same – kindly pick up after your dog – well, some of the signs aren’t always so kind.

Less than half a block away is a cute little almost country-kitchen type of sign – the type of sign that you might find in a gift shop.  It’s wooden and painted red with black happy writing.  It reads, “No dumping” with a tiny doggy paw print.  Across the street, there is a handwritten note on cardboard thumb-tacked to a tree.  “Please pick up after your dog.” Firm and to the point.  Around the corner and up a private driveway where a boat is stored in colder weather, is another handwritten sign.  This one has writing in black sharpie marker.  “Pick up the dog sh_t.  A_ _ hole!”  I like how the author didn’t want to fully commit to the obscenities but instead let the reader fill in the blanks and make their own conclusions.   But honestly, who lets a dog off its leash to run up someone’s driveway to poop?  Most likely the same person who watches the dog take a big, steaming dump and leaves it there.

The issues
One of my neighbors from up the street has an ongoing issue with dog poop in front of his house.  Each morning, when he leaves his house, he finds of a large pile of dog crap.  That’s no way to start a day! He has tried in vain to catch this dog and more so its owner in the act.  He has sat in his window late at night and early in the morning.  He even had his own version of a stakeout where he was “lying in wait” in the back seat of his car hidden only by the tinted windows of his SUV.  He has his suspicions  who the dog and owner might be.  On his tree is a handmade wooden sign that reads, “Thanks for the dog poop!  You jerk!”  Not as harsh as the boat owner but no one wants to be called a jerk and as my wife always says, “Nobody likes a jerk.”  My neighbor’s sign hung proudly on the tree outside his front door until one morning he found it broken in two next to another pile of poop.  What a jerk!  It has now become my neighbor’s mission in life to find this bastard.

So what kind of person doesn’t pick up after their dog?  Even better – what kind of person doesn’t pick up after their dog especially when it’s on the sidewalk in front of someone’s home?  A menace to society is what I say.  I like to think that most dog owners are good neighbors and would pick up their dog’s poop.  That’s part of being a responsible dog owner and a good neighbor, right?  The stereotypical dog lover, like the people involved with the Bark Park certainly don’t seem like the type to do it.  They have their little contraption of handy dandy poop bags at the ready.  I’ve seen them.

I suspect the type of person that doesn’t pick up after their dog is someone who lives in the neighborhood where you find the poop since it’s my experience as a dog owner to Vito the Pug, dogs pretty much like to poop in the same spot.  Now I’m no Cesar Millan – the dog whisperer – but I know the basic habits of dogs such as their sniffing a spot followed by the little doggy circling of the spot before going to the bathroom.  So when you see your dog doing this and you don’t have a bag to pick it up, pull him away before he can squat.  If you don’t have a bag, take the extra ten minutes to walk to your house, get one and go pick it up.

My own issue
A few years ago, I caught a neighbor leaving his dog’s poop right out in front of my house. It was 10 o’clock on a hot summer’s night and the windows were open.  As I was locking the front door and shutting off lights, I heard someone outside and took a look out the window.  A 50 year-old man with a large build stood by as his little dog took a big dump right out in front of my house where my kids play.  I watched and waited, knowing that of course he would remove a bag from his pocket and pick up the poop.  But he didn’t he began to walk down the street.

“Pick it up!  Pick it up!” I shouted through the open window.  He began to quicken his step and turn the corner. Without hesitation, I ran out of the house with no shirt or shoes on and chased him around the corner.  When confronted with why didn’t he pick up the poop, he stated he didn’t have a bag.  I took him at his word and told him I’d give him one.  I ran in the house and grabbed a plastic shopping bag.  When I came back, he was still there waiting and he was pissed.  He snatched the bag from my hand and said, “You don’t have to make a federal case out of it.”   I told him that he was the one who was wrong.  He walked away and headed to his house – which was right around the corner from me.  That guy was my neighbor.

When I came back in the house, my wife was waiting wondering what I was up to.  I explained to her what happened and she then told me the story about her father when she was little.  He was also frustrated with dog poop in front of his house.  When he would find the dog mess he would shout out to anyone on the block within earshot, “If I find out who is leaving this dog shit, I’m gonna get an elephant and have it take a massive dump in front of your house!”

Dog Poop Memories
Several years back, my family and I had a”run-in” with dog shit on M Street.  I was getting into the car to take the kids to school and then drop my wife to work and as usual we were running 10 minutes behind schedule and I had exactly 2 minutes to drive 8 blocks to the kids’ school.  As I was helping my youngest son into my truck my older son says, “What smells?”  My wife turns around to look and there is dog poop all over the back seat.  Not only tracked across the floor mats but it has managed to get on my son Henry’s leg.  And with that, the gagging ensues.  All are ordered from the car.  My wife runs back into the house for paper towels and plastic bags.  I tell my son with the dog shit on his sneaker to stick it in a puddle on the street.  My wife wipes away the poop on Henry’s leg and off of the car mats.  I find a stick to extract the poop stuck in the treads of my son’s sneakers.  Our schedule has gone out the window.  My kids are officially late for school.  Suddenly a trip to the car wash is added to my already busy day and I can’t help but think this all could have been avoided if some dog owner would have just picked up his dog’s shit.

So a friendly reminder, be a good neighbor and don’t be a jerk- pick up the poop!


  1. Jeff Sullivan September 12, 2012 at 5:50 pm

    Peter, as normal, another fantastic read.  Though my days of living in Southie have since come and gone and I’m making my way back to the dog shit capital of the world, Manhattan, I would just like to add that since winter is just around the corner or as we would say as kids “shhh, it’s around the corner” (for those that didn’t grow up Catholic or had more liberal parents than my South Boston bred ones, it was our simple way of “Shhhit!”)  Anyway, I digress, Winter will soon be upon Southie and I think it’s important to remember the simple laws of physics, in this case the simple understanding of temperature indifference, you see, snow must be at least 32 degree F or 0 C to stay as solid, increase the tempature and it will turn to it’s liquid state, then it’s gas state so on and so on…anyway, not to diviate from the point, it’s important to recognize the basic fundamental principles of dog shit, it releases from the dog at a core temp. of 99.5 degree and by the time it travels to the temporary earth called “snow” it only cools by 1 degree, upon the terd hitting it’s new home, it immediately battles with it’s new enviroment, at first it’s easy, the terd is a rabbit, flying through it’s adversary’s layers, however as the smash is enveloped, the snow’s army takes over and it’s reinforcements succeed in cooling the terd down to a harmless 32 degrees.  Now this is where the problem lays, see, you know your dog just set a landmine (dogs don’t fake it, male dogs aren’t going to rest their junk in the snow for the “fun of of it and well female…let’s move on) So here we are, it happened, you know it did, but like a fart on a train, it’s invisable and when that snow melts and the large pile of your life shows itself just know this… when you tell the truth it’s part of your past and when you tell a lie, it’s apart of your future… don’t lie, because you just may step in it, SO PICK IT UP!

  2. Trisha September 12, 2012 at 6:29 pm
    I live on M street too and have a dog! It’s so frustrating to see dog shit on the sidewalk. Especially when I am walking my own dog. Every step is a fight to keep him moving because he wants to eat someone else’s dog poop. I have wasted plenty of my own bags picking up others droppings on my own walks and it’s frustrating. Have some respect. It’s not hard to just put a couple bags in your pocket. If you are walking your dog, why wouldn’t you expect that he would take a dump?
  3. Molly Dunn September 12, 2012 at 6:32 pm

    It’s just dirty, inconsiderate and selfish. I dont even own a dog and find myself picking up at least a pile a day. Once you get used to it, it’s like changing a diaper. PLEEEAASE pick up your dog”s poop!


  4. Smelly Shoes September 13, 2012 at 3:03 pm

    The fine for being caught leaving poop behind should be $500.  THAT would be a sh*tty day for the offender.

  5. d September 14, 2012 at 2:48 pm

    Okay folks. Your dogs are cute but the poop is not. Pick it up.And really? Take it home! Don’t put in my recycle bin, where I have to dumpster dive and repackage it with my trash.Don’t leave sitting against a tree at the beach tied up in a little green bag .What the heck are you thinking? It’s a health hazzard, it’s disrespectful of your neighbors and you neighborhood and it makes you look ignorant. Have some class. Your pet, your poop.

  6. Dog Owner September 14, 2012 at 6:14 pm

    I always pick up after my dog and it drives me nuts when I see others that don’t.  But I have also be confronted by people while walking my dog who say to me “I hope you are going to pick up after him” or something of the like, without any signs that I won’t or do not intend to do so.  So add those people to the list of Southie “jerks.” 

  7. Mr. Mike August 10, 2013 at 2:40 pm

    I work in southie and every day I have to dodge giant piles of steamy dog shit on the sidewalk.  The people who leave these piles are everywhere, in fact, at “dog shit park” on west 1st, the southie degenerates leave bags of dog crap on the fence and tie them in a bags hanging them on the chain links.  The most disgusting sight and smell ever … animals is what they are … city animals

  8. K Street August 20, 2013 at 12:09 am

    Or I will pick it up and throw it at you. Seriously…ask the poor guy who had to deal with me last week. Much appreciated : )

  9. Anonymous August 20, 2013 at 1:06 am
    Unfortunately for those of us who are good citizens and courteous dog owners, the people who aren’t picking up are probably not reading this blog and aren’t vested members of the community.

    It’s a really frustrating problem. My favorite excuse is “I don’t have a bag.” Go home and get one! Or better yet, don’t walk your dog without at least one! My husband and I always bring 3 bags and never run out.

  10. Anonymous August 20, 2013 at 11:38 am
    Thank you for sharing and here is a little tip. Sprinkle cayenne pepper in areas that dogs frequently poop will deter them from pooping there again. It is harmless to environment and pets, all it does is make them sneeze and turn in opposite direction. Works great! Nothing worse than stepping in dog poop on a hot sunny day and why do people think its not necessary to pick up afte dogs in greenie across from beach?
  11. Anonymous August 20, 2013 at 2:57 pm

    ..apparently they are getting more sophisticated around my house, the lady up the street lets her dog out -closes her door and lets him roam to take a dump by himslef free from her responsibilities to clean up. Apparently she thinks it is a dump friendly zone. I have resorted to throwing coins at the little runt from my porch and I think the lil fella is getting my drift. How scummy is that.

  12. Anonymous August 22, 2013 at 8:01 pm

    The same thing always happens to me!  I ALWAYS pick up after my dogs, but feel like people are always “warning” me that I better pick up after them when I’ve never given them reason to think otherwise!  I wish all dog owners would pick up after their dogs so I don’t have to dodge poop OR worry about people harrassing me anymore!

  13. West coast dude October 3, 2013 at 6:19 am
    On a visit to my brother years ago, he waited for a regular unescorted late night visitor to,leave a ‘deposit’ on the front lawn. Slingshot in hand, brother took aim as the dog hunched down. Pooch got a sting on the hindquarters mid-log. No injury resulted and the lawn was not soiled by said pooch again.
  14. Anonymous October 11, 2013 at 5:22 am
    I hate the dog poop and I often pick up other dogs’ poop while I pick up my dog’s. But I’m sick of the kids (and degenerate adults) who throw their crap on the sidewalks. I don’t go a week without seeing some low-life kid or adult (usually smoking) conveniently littering as they stroll their lazy asses back to the corner store to get their lotto fix. I think the litter has become a far greater issue. Dog owners add life to the community and parks (keeping an eye on the neighborhood) while others just trash it, literally.
  15. Leah March 9, 2014 at 8:07 pm
    P.S. After you pick it up please throw it in a trash can!! We named our wifi “please pick up your dog shit” .
  16. poop dogg March 10, 2014 at 2:56 am

    Take a walk up to Thomas park and play a game of count the dog poops. Beautiful National park gone to the dogs. Shame.

  17. Kevin Conroy March 10, 2014 at 4:51 pm

    There are too many dogs in South Boston PERIOD.

  18. Kevin Conroy March 10, 2014 at 4:52 pm

    There are too many dogs in South Boston PERIOD.

  19. Poop dogg March 10, 2014 at 11:10 pm
    Take a stroll up Thomas Park. It’s littered with dog poop. Disgraceful.
  20. Jay March 13, 2014 at 1:42 pm

    Follow the owner to their house and launch the crap on their front door step. Most of the offenders walk their dogs under the blanket of darkness without a leash on….they will walk in front of the dog and pretend they don’t know a missle is being dropped on the sidewalk behind them.

    Filthy animals.

  21. Anonymous March 20, 2015 at 11:46 pm

    As a dog owner it really pisses me off when people don't pick up after they're dog. It reflects  badly on us responsible owner. 

  22. Annie March 21, 2015 at 12:02 am

    This is a great article – all so true and all very well said!  I live across the street from you on M Street, and I couldn't agree more. Nearly every other day, my husband and I have to pick up dog poop that is right in front of our house – we don't even own a dog- how can this be that this has become a regular chore? However, if we don't take care of it, our 2-year-old gets curious  or worse yet, we run the risk of having ourselves or our neighbors roll strollers through it.  We've had many morning derailed like yours having to deal with it-  the irony is we never got a dog becasue we figured we don't have time to take care of a dog, and here we are picking up after dogs all the time.  I love dogs and animals- it is the owners who don't pick up who could learn a lesson in caring and respect.

  23. ILG March 21, 2015 at 5:44 pm

    My block is literally covered in crap. Not only is it disgusting but dog feces can find it's way into our water supply and carries all kinds of nasty bacteria. 

    Let's not forget that there is a $50 fine for owners who don’t clean up after their canines.





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