My husband and I recently bought our first house. The neighborhood is great except for one thing: one of our neighbors lets their dog wander the neighborhood to do its “business.” I wouldn’t mind a wandering dog if it kept its “business” at home, but we’re constantly finding little presents on our grass! Why should I clean up after their dog? Short of scooping up the poop and dumping it on their lawn, how can we ask them to monitor their pooch more closely?
Dear Seeing Brown,
I’m assuming that when you refer to finding the dog’s “business” on your lawn, you don’t mean his leather briefcase filled with legal documents, fountain pens and a few bags of kibble in case Rover gets hungry after his afternoon conference call. No, you’re probably talking about that gooey hazard currently wreaking havoc in neighborhoods like yours around the world: Free Range Turds.
My first inclination is to advise you to simply grab a brown paper bag and a lighter, then go execute the classic “Flaming Bag of Crap On Doorstep” maneuver. Not only is this one of my favorite ways to let someone know they’re a major league jackass, it’s also really good for the environment. (Or at least that’s what I think I heard Matt Damon tell Oprah one time when I was tipsy and binging on pita chips, and watching her special on global warming. Not sure.)
Anyway, if you’d rather not go that route, and you can’t afford to set up a Porta-Potty on his front lawn so he knows what it’s like to have your grass turned into an al fresco bathroom, there are a couple of more “legal” things you can try.
First, nicely ask your neighbor if he would please stop letting his pet leave unwanted presents in your yard. If he doesn’t agree, and chances are he won’t considering he thinks it’s okay to let his dog run around loose, then contact your Home Owner’s Association if you have one, or your local Animal Control if you don’t. Either group should be able to tell you your rights and the appropriate action to take.
And if that doesn’t work, just turn on your sprinklers the next time you see Rover and maybe he’ll get the message. After all, sometimes the dog is the smartest one in the family. Good luck!