Boyle Heights looks for solutions to pet poop problem

By Marni Epstein

BOYLE HEIGHTS — With pet ownership  at an all time high, the problems posed by uncollected pet waste and inconsiderate owners who don’t clean up after their animals have become an issue in Boyle Heights according to Boyle Heights Beat. The added joy that Fido brings also means added pet waste in Boyle Heights’ streets and parks. Aside from its unsightliness, the excrement can unwittingly be tracked into homes, leading to bacteria and illness. Now, according to Boyle Heights Beat, some residents want to do something about all that pet waste:

“Some Boyle Heights residents are trying to get the City of Los Angeles to place bag stands in its parks. Others are stressing the need for educating residents about the duties that come with pet ownership.”

The neighborhood council has been handing out plastic bags at the Farmer’s Market at Mariachi Plaza, but others wonder if the problem necessitates a broader-based approach.

Marni Epstein Epstein is an entertainment, music, and lifestyle Journalist and resident of Echo Park. She has previously worked in the film and digital media industries with FOX and Sony Pictures Entertainment. She is currently also pursuing a Masters in Historic Preservation.


  1. The problem is with the residents. Putting bags will not help. scooping after your pet is a responsibility which comes with having a pet. We need to bring awareness to the residents about this problem.

    Stray dogs are another issue in this area.

    • Putting bags up will help with the awareness. If you see those bags every time you go out for a walk, maybe one of those times you’ll have an insight into what those bags are for. (Also, I bet that some percentage of the poop problem is people who bring their bags with them 95% of the time, but forget it in their other jacket 5% of the time and don’t have a way to clean it up this time. Bags will definitely help them.)

      • thats sweet kenny you must be new. you are giving people way too much credit. If a person lacks the insight of “poop bags” they arent fit to have a pet. probably can’t even hold a real job or raise children.

  2. low class people exhibit low class behavior.
    (no, I’m not talking about socioeconomic class)

    Whenever possible, if we catch someone in the act, we should let them know that this is not acceptable social behavior. I’ve found getting mad at them usually doesn’t work very well, because they focus on your anger and not on their anti-social behavior. I usually ask them why they think it’s ok to leave their crap for everyone else.

  3. I’ve found what works well is to offer the person a bag (from your own collection). This lets them assume that you think they simply “ran out” of bags and it also conveys the message that picking up after your pet is expected.

    Of course this only works if you “catch them in the act” and the start walking away.

    George Lopez (the Latino comedian) has a bit about Mexicans and picking up dog poo. According to him, it’s not very “macho” to pick up after your dog in that culture. It was an interesting glimpse into his cultural beliefs and probably the main symptom for this problem in this area. Out of the four times I’ve offered a bag to someone intent on leaving their dog’s poo behind at Echo Park Lake, 3 were male Latino. Of course the white version of this anti-social behavior is allowing your dog(s) off leash in Elysian Park so they don’t “notice” where their dog pooped.

    • “don’t notice” ha ha, so true. I caught a lady in my neighborhood who was stopped checking her phone, and “didn’t notice” little fido had pooped in the neighbor’s landscaping. I’m sure she knew, but played it off like the dog was being sneaky.

  4. The other issue that I’ve personally encountered, is the lack of trashcans on the streets, I pick up after my dog, but I hate having to carry a bag full of poop with me for the rest of the walk. Major streets like Whittier have trashcans, but most others don’t, and I’m not talking about residential streets, from my experience streets like Olympic blvd, has just about zero trashcans.

  5. I have a large breed dog and I consider it a badge of honor to pick up his poo and carry it until it can be disposed of in a proper public trash can (or mine at home). I would rather carry it with my bare hands than leave it behind. People who don’t pick up suck…

  6. There is too many dogs running free without their owners. I sometimes count up to 10 dogs just in my neighborhood alone. They poop at will wherever they want. Maybe there needs to be some Animal Control trucks wandering around picking them up.

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