Maybe with a little modern technology the dog shit problem can be solved rather easily.
A persistent problem in my hometown is dog shit. There is a group of dog owners in this city that somehow thinks it is acceptable that their dogs leave their droppings in front of someone else’s house, restaurant or at any other place. I know that there is probably a large group of dog owners who live up to the consequences of wanting to keep a dog in the middle of town and clean up after their four legged friends, but unfortunately these responsible owners are overshadowed by the asocial behaviour of the less adapted dog enthusiasts.
Having your dog leave excrement in public area’s is forbidden in The Netherlands and there is a nice fine (about €100,-) if you’re caught. But understandably the police has better things to do than patrolling the streets for inappropriate animal behaviour – although I think somewhere there are a few animal cops in this country who might have some time to spare. Recently I noticed a community attendant watching a dog create a warm present right in front of the door of a restaurant. Probably because of the rather aggressive appearance of the dog owner, no action was taken.
So what can we do to stop the dog shit terror? I think it is clear that a direct fine has it’s drawbacks. It’s probably the same as with illegally parked cars: fining them when the owner is not present proves much easier and more convenient than when he is standing in front of you. But cars have a number-plate that makes it possible to fine the owner even if he is not present. Dog shit should have a number plate as well!
Let’s make it compulsory for dog owners to submit their dog’s DNA to a database. Dog feces can be traced back easily to their owner that way, without the need of a direct confrontation. There is no longer the necessity to catch the dog ‘in the act’. I see dog shit, I alert the municipality, they come by with a long pricker or other device to take a DNA sample, even hours after the crime. The registered owner of the dog receives a peppered fine in the mail, accompanied by a bill for the DNA testing.