Advice from the Neighbors


One thing about living in Berkeley: You can count on encountering advice from all quarters on how to conduct yourself in public; sometimes the advice is very detailed. Here are a couple examples dealing with the plague of dog waste, Now, the town does have a law on the books about this: If your dog bestows a precious leaving on lawn or sidewalk or village green, you, the dog’s best buddy, need to pick it up. And the evidence is that most people do. Given the number of dogs around, it’s uncommon to find evidence of their alimentary workings underfoot, and the public garbage cans all over town are brimming with those little plastic newspaper delivery bags, all filled with crap of the non-editorial variety.

I guess I wonder who the signs speak to. If you are the kind of person who thinks nothing of having your dog take a dump on someone else’s lawn, and there are plenty of that kind, do these signs stir your conscience and make you think, “Gee–I should really think about other people sometimes!” And if you are the kind of person who does your best not to leave fecal surprises for your fellow townsfolk to step in, do these signs do anything more than irritate you a little? I suppose there’s a middle population of people who walk around not knowing what they’ll do when their dog unloads. These signs might make them say, “Jeepers! That’s a good point!” But since you actually have to prepare yourself to deal with the eventuality that your dog is going to be leaving day-old Alpo around the ‘hood–you need to carry bags, etc.–there really isn’t a middle group. If you’re not prepared, by definition you’re in the Dump and Run Club.

As far as the dog urine sign below: What it says may very well be true. Though the sign says in small type at the bottom that it is the work of “people who love dogs and flowers,” I question whether the authors have actually observed one of these lovely dogs. Because, even with the most fastidious owners in the world, most dogs are gonna go where they’re gonna go (and mostly that means where another dog went).


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2 Replies to “Advice from the Neighbors”

  1. This is how smart poodles are: I taught mine she had to do her doo-doo before I would take her on a walk. We ran around the back yard until she did. But I still carried a baggie with, just in case.

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