Draper’s doggone poop problemJun 15, 2020 10:44AM ● By Mimi Darley Dutton
By Mimi Darley Dutton | [email protected]
Though Mayor Troy Walker didn’t go “on the record” regarding the reality of Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny or the Tooth Fairy (nor was he pressed to do so by this reporter), he did declare that there’s no such thing as the Poop Fairy ready to magically whisk away your dog’s waste.
“If you spend any time on our trails, you will see these little bags of dog crap that people pick up but tie in a bag and leave there. I don’t know who they think will pick it up. There’s no Poop Fairy. It’s perplexing. Obviously, they’ve taken the bag with them, they sort of pick up after their dog, but for whatever reason, they leave it. It makes no sense to me. Or you see an occasional pile that they didn’t pick up at all. At the dog park, it’s a constant thing for our staff,” Walker said.
The city already banned dogs on many Corner Canyon trails for the sake of the watershed. “The watershed has improved to drinkable levels. It totally changed the quality of the water, so banning dogs has had the effect we wanted,” he said.
The city’s Dayland Dog Park off 300 East is the most used park in the city. A second dog park at Galena Park is slated to open late this summer. While dog owners are expected to bring their own dog waste bags, the city also provides bags at most trailheads and at Dayland Dog Park.
“When everybody stopped going to work (because of coronavirus) and were all outside with their dogs, the more dogs in the parks, the more poop we’ve seen,” Walker said.
Two young brothers, Reef and Talon Heikkila, took it upon themselves to clean up other people’s dog poop in their neighborhood. “They saw our Facebook messaging about it. They’re awesome young men that wanted to do some service…but they shouldn’t have to. It’s not a service project we should have in Draper. No one else should have to pick up after your dog,” he said.
Walker, himself a dog owner, said it’s not just the poop that’s a problem. “Another thing people need to know is that dogs need to be on leashes everywhere—parks, neighborhoods, trails…they’re only allowed off leash in the Dayland Dog Park, a designated area in SunCrest, and the dog park at Galena that is under construction. But every trail, every other city park and every neighborhood, they’re required to be on a leash. We’re going to start enforcing that because it’s gotten a bit out of hand. It’s basic dog ownership 101,” he said.