Ready to help vanquish the poo this April Stools Day? | SteamboatToday.com

Ready to help vanquish the poo this April Stools Day?

Here are some facts

Scott Franz

Kyle Love, right, and Maria Palmer walk Brewster along the Spring Creek Trail. Love and Palmer say they always pick up after Brewster, but that can’t be said of all dog owners. That’s why organizers of April Stools Day are hoping that a large number of volunteers will come out in force to help clean up local parks and trails across Steamboat Springs.





Kyle Love, right, and Maria Palmer walk Brewster along the Spring Creek Trail. Love and Palmer say they always pick up after Brewster, but that can't be said of all dog owners. That's why organizers of April Stools Day are hoping that a large number of volunteers will come out in force to help clean up local parks and trails across Steamboat Springs.
John F. Russell

— What weighs as much as 280 Subaru Outbacks and could line local trails for miles and miles if it wasn’t picked up?

If Steamboat Springs data geek Scott Ford crunched his numbers correctly, it’s the amount of doo-doo the estimated 5,500 dogs who live in the city generate every year.

Community members can band together Saturday and do their part to pick up some of this poop that has been left behind and neglected at local parks and trails.

The event is called April Stools Day, and for years, it has helped make local trails more sanitary and enjoyable as the snow melts and reveals the leftover ordure.

Pet Kare Clinic is hosting the clean-up day.

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Residents who are interested in removing the droppings should bring gloves and a pooper scooper to the clinic at 102 Anglers Drive at noon Saturday.

If the weather is poor, call the clinic at 970-879-5273 to ensure the event is still happening.

Ford estimated the city’s dog population generates 2,750 pounds of excrement every day and more than 1 million pounds of the brown stuff every year.

If the daily dog dump wasn’t cleaned up at all, the amount of excreta would be enough to line about three miles of trail if each pile were spaced 17 inches apart.

The math assumes there are about 5,500 dogs in the city and takes into account an estimate from the American Veterinary Association that a 40-pound dog produces four ounces of scat per bowel movement.

According to the city’s most recent community survey, half of the city’s households own one or more dogs.

While April Stools Day pitches humor as a way to attract volunteers, dog feces is no laughing matter.

Ford, who owns a dog himself, noted one gram of dog waste can harbor 23 million fecal coliform bacteria, in addition to parasites and roundworms that can harm humans and animals.

“Given our area’s rapid snow melt, without question, there are high concentrations of bacteria-rich poo washing into the Yampa,” Ford wrote in an email.

So help do your part and help keep the city free of the dog dung.

To reach Scott Franz, call 970-871-4210, email scottfranz@SteamboatToday.com or follow him on Twitter @ScottFranz10