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Is Dog Poop Good For Anything?

Is Dog Poop Good For Anything?

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If American Pet Products Association stats are anything to go by, there are approximately 89.7 million dogs in the US.

Now imagine that every dog excretes anywhere from 0.5-0.75 pounds of poop every day.

That translates to about 275 pounds per year. The statistics get even more interesting.

Keep in mind that these figures only reflect the United States.

 If you extrapolate them to the rest of the world, you cannot believe the amount of waste our dear canines excrete.

As a pet parent, you must wonder what you can do to provide a solution to the problem.

A lot of dog waste ends up in land refills that are already operating at maximum capacities.

 Is there anything you can do to make your dog’s poo beneficial to the environment?

Can you compost it?

If you have a garden, can you utilize the poo as fertilizer as is the case with cow waste?

Is dog poop good for trees and flowers?

These are some of the questions we seek to answer in this guide.

Let’s dive right in…

Is Dog Poop Good For Anything?

Dog poo is stinky and disgusting.

Most importantly, if not cleaned appropriately, it can cause a lot of problems for people and other pets.

For one, it can pollute surface and groundwater.

One gram of dog poo has approximately 2.3 million coliform bacteria.

Besides coliform bacteria, the poo also has hookworms, whipworms, salmonella, parvo, giardia, roundworms, and campylobacteria.

These can easily find their way to our bodies making us sick.

Dog waste also attracts unwanted bugs including fleas, flies, ad ticks—all of which can make the home or lawn unsanitary.

They can transmit diseases to humans. Plus, the stink caused by your pet’s poo will make your space unbearable.

Does that mean that dog poop is simply just useless and should end up in landfills?

Not really. You can utilize the poo as fertilizer for your plants.

We go into detail below.

What Can Dog Poop Be Used For?

Dog poop can be used as mulch or manure for vegetation much like livestock waste.

If you have a lawn or a flower garden, you can utilize it to add nutrients to your plants.

However, in its raw form, dog poop cannot be used as manure as it is too acidic.

Composting neutralizes most of the toxic elements including bacteria and parasites.

During the process of composting, the dog poo will be broken into humus by microbes.

The process results in a temperature increase of 1400F (600C) which kills most dog poop bacteria.

The environment in the compost is also harsher than inside a dog’s digestive tract destroying most of the pathogens.

Once composted, you can transfer the compost to your garden.

Please keep in mind that the manure is ideal for non-edible plants only.

Avoid using it on anything that is consumed by humans.

Can Dog Poop Be Used As Fertilizer?

If you’ve reared cows before, you know that their waste is directly added to gardens as fertilizer.

Dog poop can be used in the same way but only after it is composted.

 The reason is simple. Waste is a by-product of what is ingested.

Cows are herbivores, meaning their diets are mostly plant-based. They chomp on grass, trees, leaves, and the like.

What comes out is mostly the same thing.

 The nutrients in their poo have fibers that help plants grow.

Dogs, on the other hand, eat a wide variety of things including meat, grains, vegetation, and dairy products.

Consequently, they tend to produce acidic poop (because of the presence of proteins in their diets) with nutrients that are not compatible with plant needs.

That’s where composting comes in.

The process destroys harmful pathogens and turns acidic dog poop into good mulch and fertilizer for your gardens.

So, yes, dog poop can be used as fertilizer as long as it has been broken down properly in a compost bin.

You may also want to check: How to Decontaminate Soil from Dog Feces (10 Great Strategies)

Can Dog Poop Be Used As Compost?

Most certainly!

It is, by far, the only method of converting what would have otherwise been useless dog poop into good fertilizer for plant matter.

 Composting your dog’s poo is a simple, eco-friendly, and inexpensive process for odor-free and nutrient-free fertilizer that your garden will absolutely love.

As long as you stick to the guidelines of safe composting, you will end up with great results.

One of the most important ones is that the temperature of the compost bin must be 1400F or 600C to kill pathogens.     

Secondly, the container used to compost dog poop should be separate from those used for other purposes.

Additionally, high carbon levels should be used to stimulate host temperatures and sterilize the poop as much as possible.

 Lastly, composted waste should not be used on edible plants.

How Long Does It Take To Compost Dog Poop?

According to the UF IFAS Extension, dog waste should be composted for about 4-8 weeks.

This was after researchers studied how long it takes to get a dirt-like mixture after composting dog poop consisting of sawdust.

Each week, the composted manure would be turned to even things out.

 The compost bin needs to be covered with black plastic to guarantee high temperatures.

Sometimes, the process takes several months.

 It really depends on the amount of poop in the compost bin.

 The more the waste, the longer it takes to compost.

The best way to know your manure is ready is to monitor the temperature.

 If it remains constant after turning the mixture over and over again, watering it, and aerating it, it means there’s no more organic matter to be broken down and the fertilizer is ready to be used.

Is Dog Poop Good Fertilizer For Trees?

Any tree that isn’t consumed by humans is ideal for dog poop manure.

As long as the waste has been composted, it can be added to the tree.

To use it, plant a tree in a container.

Cut out the bottom and plant it in a hole in the ground.

Place the compost on top of the container, cover it with some dirt or soil, and put the lid on.

Keep monitoring the area so that it doesn’t get too wet or too dry.

If the tree is already planted, you can add a small portion of dog poop around the bottom of the tree.

Cover it with soil and sprinkle some water over it.

The nutrients in the manure will sip into the root of the tree enhancing its growth.

Is Dog Poop Good Fertilizer For Roses?

Dog poop is great manure for roses provided you create compost out of it first.

 It has the potential of making your roses lush.

Simply add a layer of about 3 inches of manure around the rose beds.

Use a shovel or fork to mix it into the soil.

Water the flowers well and watch them grow into beautiful roses. 

Is Dog Poop Good Fertilizer For Flowers?

Like roses, dog poop can make good fertilizer for any kind of inedible flower.

Again, the trick is to compost it first until the organic matter has been neutralized.

The amount to use depends on the type of flower.

Delicate flowers require a small amount of manure while heartier ones need more.

Adjust the manure accordingly.

Is Dog Poop Toxic To Wildlife?

New research published earlier this year on Sky News shows that dog feces and urine found in nature add a lot of phosphorous and nitrogen.

This results in the over-fertilization of the ground affecting the ecosystem negatively.

This touches both the flora and fauna.

Further, dog poop carries lots of parasites, bacteria, and viruses which may transfer diseases to other animals.

Parting Thoughts

Although it is smelly and disgusting to look at, dog poop is actually beneficial for plants.

It can be turned into compost and added to flower beds and gardens.

The process of composting takes time and energy but once done, it will give you natural, inexpensive, and good fertilizer.

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