During the month of May, Jason Smith of Radcliff-based ReALife LLC announced plans to offer up to 30 free yard cleanings from PetCorps Dog Waste Removal Service.
Although the yard cleanings will be free of charge, Smith said he would accept donations. Anything contributed during the promotion will go to the PAWS Shelter Foundation in Elizabethtown, KY.
The average dog produces about 5.25 pounds of dog waste per week. The American Pet Products Association estimates the population of dogs in the United States at over 77.5 million, which translates to a lot of waste soiling yards, parks, walkways, and streets.
“Dog waste is a real problem not just for families and their pets, but for the environment also,” Smith explained.
According to the EPA, pet waste can be a major source of bacteria and excess nutrients in local waters. Besides bacteria, parasites such as roundworm and hookworm are shed in the feces of infected animals and can contaminate soil. Children who play in dirt and have poor hygiene habits are easily infected with these parasites.
PetCorps is a service of ReALife LLC, a pet services company based in Radcliff, KY. As a former veterinary technician in the U.S. Army at Fort Knox, Smith, 31, has seen his share of dog and cat waste and has no problem cleaning it up for pet owners who have better things to do with their time.
Each week, Smith travels to residential properties in Hardin, Jefferson, and Nelson Counties to clean up and haul away dog waste for safe disposal. The waste is double-bagged and disposed of in a dumpster at his Radcliff business location.
“This is not the ideal solution for disposing of dog waste,” Smith explained. “However, it is safe. We are currently exploring other effective means of using the dog waste.”
One possible solution is composting. According to a 2005 report by the United States Department of Agriculture, dog waste can be composted and used to fertilize lawns and flower beds.
Smith said he plans to begin a composting program to reduce the amount of dog waste entering landfills. He said the first batch of fertilizer could be available within the next two years.
“While dog waste is safe to use for landscaping purposes, it is not safe for use in vegetable gardens,” Smith cautioned. “In fact, the USDA does not recommend it for use in gardens.”
Those interested in receiving a free yard cleaning must register online at www.kypooperscooper.com between April 22 and April 30.