DEAR JOAN: I am writing to ask for your help to bring an issue to the attention of the general public. The issue is the dog poopy bags left on hiking trails. I have not seen this issue being addressed anywhere.
I posted on my neighborhood bulletin board asking people not to leave the bags on the trial. I'm happy that they cleaned up after their dog, but then they leave the bag on the side of the trail.
I know they have the intention of retrieving it on the return trip, but alas, they must get distracted by the birds, the flowers or, horror of all horrors, the phone, or they cannot find the spot where they have left it, or they've have taken an unplanned detour as the spirit might have moved them.
So to the dog walkers, I have a favor to ask. I would like you to carry the bag with you while you walk. If you think "Ew! I don't want to carry it with me," think how other walkers feel when they come upon a bag that has been torn apart by other animals.
If you don't like to carry the poopy bag in your hand, may I suggest that you bring a small carrying bag -- a fanny pack works as well -- with you and put that offending bag in it. You can also tie it to the leash. I wouldn't be surprised if there are designer bags for this purpose. Fashionable celebrities need to clean up after their dogs, too.
Your conscience will be clear because you know you have packed it out.
Olive Lee-Deacon, Oakland, Calif.
DEAR OLIVE: I do wonder what people are thinking when they just drop the bag and walk away, especially when they drop it in my yard. So yes, thanks for cleaning up, but even if you're using biodegradable bags, they need to be disposed of in the trash.
DEAR JOAN: Do you have information or relief for a dog that licks blankets and other furniture?
The dog is a 3-year-old Shiba Inu. She eats a freeze-died raw food diet with equal parts water, or raw meat with dried vegetables and water. She has a large backyard but prefers we join her.