Headline in the local newspaper this morning: Dog Poop Problem In Fort Collins Parks, Trails. You know you live in a nice place when that's the lead story. No drive-by shooting. No kidnapping. No arson. Dog poop. Problems are problems though, and we need to start picking it up.

My wife and I have two dogs. We religiously pick up their little prizes as soon as they deposit them on our lawn. It's much more fun than waiting for it to accumulate and spending an hour doing a much bigger cleanup job. Keep up with it and it never becomes a project. (True for most things.)

We have neighbors that let their dogs out off-leash. The dogs often run over to our yard, do their thing, and run home. I will never understand the part of my neighbor's brain where I am supposed to clean up after them (see empty toilet paper roll, or dirty dishes in the workplace sink).

It infuriated my wife for a long time, but we have adopted a new poop policy. Pick it up. All of it. Theirs, ours, all of it. As dog owners it is our responsibility to be good ambassadors for the dog community. Non-dog owners do not care which dog's butt the prizes are from. They just see 'poop' and think 'dogs.' We've decided to try and make that thought a pleasant one.

It's ok if my neighbors don't want to be ambassadors. We've got it covered.

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