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previous: SLObrain Yeah, here comes another dog subjec... -- 5/5/2003 3:54 AM View Thread

Re: How to keep dogs from crapping in your yard?

5/6/2003 8:18 PM
Mark Hammer
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Re: How to keep dogs from crapping in your yard?
This is certainly one of the stranger threads here, but here goes...  
 
A lot easier to repel prey than predators with scents and things, since prey tend to hard-wired to detect signs of "trouble" including associated smells. Predators on the other hand have to be spaced out a bit in nature (since animals to eat tend to be less plentiful than seeds and leaves to eat), and they tend to accomplish that spacing with assorted scent markings, including feces and urine (which is one of the reasons why prey use the smell of predators' poop as a marker of "trouble").  
 
The upshot is that it is considerably less likely that you will find a scent in any form that repels rather than attracts a dog.  
 
The diversity of responses here suggests that the single biggest thing you can do to keep dog crap off your lawn is to select your neighbourhood more carefully. That's not to blame anyone for *allowing* others to deposit unwanted materials on their lawns (and it certainly isn't a case of national differences, in spite of what visitors to Paris will tell you). Rather, there seem to be neighbourhoods where the prevailing values result in conscientious poop-n-scoop behaviour, and other neighbourhoods where no one seems to care or think that others will care.  
 
My guess is that the biggest factor will be the presence of children in owned, rather than rented dwellings. If all you do with your lawn/yard is kick back with a beer in a chaise longe, your perspective on what lies around the tree over by the sidewalk is very different than if you have a 3-year old who is going to use the *entire* yard. Renters are also a little less vigilant about what their pets' behaviour does for their reputation because there is little value in reputation when folks keep moving.  
 
If you DO have children or anticipate children visiting, it might be worth posting a sign indicating that the yard NEEDS to be safe for young children. Stapling an ample selection of plastic shopping bags to the signpost might help too. Of course dogs themselves tend to be rather dyslexic so this only works if there is a human around to read it, and a conscience around to make use of what is read.  
 
You can always leave quinine-coated doggie treats around the perimeter of the yard so that the dog associates the yard with an unpleasant experience. It's not punishing him for pooping but if he gets doggie treats elsewhere and only gets that lousy rotten taste in YOUR yard, then he *may* decide that he doesn't like to go in your yard because the conflict between *really* wanting to eat it, and what he knows is gonna happen if he does, may be unpleasant. If applied in the appropriate amounts, the quinine will simply be disgustingly bitter, and won't hurt the pooch. Given what we know from research, the dog is more likely to associate your *yard* with the lousy taste if the treats are varied (i.e., not the exact same one all the time) and are fairly commonly encountered ones. Using an exotic treat will likely result in an association between the treat and taste, and not the yard and taste (which is the association you want).

 
Replies:
Eric H [QUOTE]Stapling an ample selection ... -- 5/7/2003 1:41 PM
Bob Predaina Mark, I have to agree with you abou... -- 5/7/2003 3:41 PM