Entry 165: This Post is Full of Crap

Our dog poops.*

Toby is a Shetland Sheepdog, which are also called Shelties, although I don’t know why. I mean, if you’re going to shorten it, shouldn’t be Shetlies?

Toby is, I swear, the absolutely best dog that has ever lived.** He is my buddy, almost always by my side, looking up at me, hoping that it’s time for something.

But he has this one solid-waste-related drawback: He does, in fact, poop.

We knew he would poop when we got him almost 11 years ago. We didn’t even ask the breeder “Will he poop?” We just assumed he would.

What we didn’t know back then was that we’d one day own property for him to poop on.

When we lived in our condo townhouse in Westchester, we picked up the poop because leaving it there was disgusting and, besides, if we didn’t pick it up, the condo police might do something to us, like exhibit us in the stocks by the swimming pool.***  And it’s not like we could have left Toby’s poop on the ground and gotten away with it; he eats a lot of carrots, and sometimes his poop comes out day-glo orange.  You wouldn’t exactly need a CSI team to find the culprit.

We used the plastic bags that newspapers get delivered in to pick up the poop, and we’d drop it into the dumpster that served all the units around our house. Once, we started to run short of the bags, and I ordered like a gazillion of them online. We still have them. We moved with them.

But we don’t have to read newspapers anymore.

Now that we own our property, there’s no one to tell us what we can or cannot do regarding Toby’s poop. I know homeowners who just leave it out there on the theory that it will fertilize the lawn. We could pick it up and fling it into the trees behind the house. And I suppose we could also pick up the poop, carry it into the house, drop it into the toilet, and flush. And then do something else with the icky bag.

Complicating matters is the fact that Toby is not a one-spot pooper. I don’t mean that he doesn’t always poop in the same spot; I mean that he moves while he’s pooping. He’ll start over here, and end up over there, and meanwhile you’re bending behind him trying to pick up what he just did while watching to see where he’s going next. Sometimes he’ll fake you out; you think he’s finished, and you tie up the bag, and then he starts going again.

We call that a two-bagger.

This time of year, there’s an additional problem: you can’t find the poop among the leaves.  You bend down with your bag, targeting that long, brown thing you could swear just came out of his ass, only to be disappointed in discovering it’s just a rolled up leaf.  And meanwhile, Toby’s pooping somewhere else.

Anyway, after decades of city and condo living with dogs, I’m conditioned to pick up poop and drop it into some sort of receptacle. I really don’t want to leave it where it lays because it will attract flies and, in the winter, steam comes out of it and then it freezes solid which somehow makes it even more disgusting, although I’m not sure why because at least it doesn’t squish anymore. And I don’t like flinging it into the woods, because whenever I do, I always manage to hit a tree with a loud SPLAT and then it hangs there for awhile until it eventually falls off like an old suction cup.

The solution we came up with is to have a trash can in the garage with a garbage bag in it. We put the bagged poop in there and throw it out on trash days. I’ve considered leaving the poop can outside permanently, but it doesn’t seem to be stinking up the garage, and I’m afraid a big gust of wind will come along and knock the poop can over and there’d be these little wind-blown newspaper bags full of poop floating all over the place like poop balloons. (Poopaloons!)

See you soon.

*But at least he’s not Zeus, the dog I mentioned in my previous post, a giant animal that must create ponderous piles of poop you’d need a shovel to pick up.

**If you have a dog, you might disagree, but you’d be wrong.

***Not really. They only had gallows.

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7 Responses to Entry 165: This Post is Full of Crap

  1. Cathy Marshall says:

    Mark…you so perfectly describe what it is like to have a healthy, full grown sheltie poop machine. They are great dogs! I love them. I love mine (Smokey.) For a while we had two shelties (Reba is now sadly gone over the Rainbow Bridge (?) to wherever. When you have two shelties running rampant over your yard, the poop piles are unbelieveable. As we live on a lake, we also have seasonal geese on the lawn leaving even more disgusting poop piles about. My advice after years of experience is to get a long handled metal dust pan and a small rake as this makes a perfect pooper scooper…..and then throw all the poop into your neighbors yard. This really endears you to the neighborhood!

    • markhal says:

      Cathy–Reba and Smokey are Toby’s cousins, remember? Same breeder. Toby came to visit once. Maybe it’s not all Shelties, just the ones from that breeder!

      • Cathy Marshall says:

        I do well remember that…..in fact, the picture of cousin Toby above looks like the perfect blend of my two dogs. Made my heart skip a beat — what a ponim! (yiddish word for “face” for your non-jewish readers)
        Now that I remember it…when Toby came to visit, they three must have hatched a plan to play this poop trick on us for fun (Smokey is an instigator you know.) When you wrote about the frozen poop, I was surprised you did not call them poopsicles, as Smokey lovingly calls them. They are the real motivation for that ole pooper scooper after all…..

  2. Vinny Bond says:

    Nancy’s Papillon does the same dang thing…two drops..move…another dropping…move…another…move….and when we got him and he did it in the house..WHAT A PAIN

  3. islandscribe says:

    I have a Sheltie – correction… I have three Shelties and have owned various delightful representatives of this breed for the past 30 years. BEST DOGS EVER!! And yeah…moving poopers. And barkers. And shedders. But they are worth it.

  4. Sheila says:

    Thanks for this post I was wondering if my Sheltie was the only one that pooped like that!! So good to Know I’m not the only one looking for poop among the leaves where he walks and drops little poop balls with carrots 😂

  5. Rebecca says:

    I have one that walks in a circle to poop 💩, and one that walks and poops 💩. I have 4 Shelties, and like you, carry an infinite number of poop bags also.

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