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City of Bellingham, WA
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Pet Waste Belongs in the Trash

Pick Up Pet Waste

Pet waste holds bacteria and parasites that survive for months on land. Rainwater carries these pollutants into storm drains, which lead to streams, lakes, and the bay without treatment. The bacteria can be a health hazard to children playing in streams, harm wildlife, and pollute Lake Whatcom, the source of our drinking water.


Pick up dog waste in your yard and public places. Bag it and place it in the trash. A single gram of pet waste, the size of a pea, contains 23 million fecal coliform bacteria. The approximately 18,500 dogs in Bellingham can produce 9,250 pounds of waste a day. This is equal to the waste of 4,125 humans.
The City provides pet waste bag stations at several parks and trails.

The Hounds for Healthy Watersheds volunteer program encourages dog owners to properly dispose of their pet’s waste at home and on city trails to keep trails enjoyable and waterways healthy. If you live in the Silver Beach Creek Watershed, volunteer to maintain a station near you. To volunteer or for or more information, contact the Environmental Educator in the Stormwater Division at the Public Works Department.


Cat waste also pollutes our waterways. Approximately 25,000 outdoor cats leave waste in Bellingham yards and neighborhoods. Place a litter box outside for your cat. Bag the waste and place it in the trash.

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