FROSTY RABBIT BUSH stands out against the brown hills along the Thompson.

FROSTY RABBIT BUSH stands out against the brown hills along the Thompson.

Taking care of business is expected

The first breath of spring shouldn't smell like dog crap.

Fifty-eight days left until the Vernal Equinox – the first day of Spring, March 20.

The misty,  moisty weather earlier this week with temperatures above zero that turned all of our snow into messy, mooshy puddles made me think about it. I’ve been reminding myself that I have to get busy and do some online ordering for any vegetable seed that I can’t buy locally, because they sell out fast at this time of year.

I’ve also been reminded of Spring’s return by others this week who have noted the hazards that lay beneath the ice and snow every year, waiting for The Big Thaw – dog poo.

It’s been the same in most of the towns and cities I’ve lived in, from the east coast to the west: The wind changes direction and gives you that first whiff of fresh, Spring air, followed seconds later by the aroma of warmed up poop. It’s not a nice way to welcome Spring.

Times change. It used to be okay to indulge in a lot of bad habits that we can’t do anymore. Letting dogs and cats run free to mess in your neighbour’s yard, on the sidewalk or in the park without cleaning it up is one of those things that is changing.

Ninety-nine per cent of our pets are fed commercial food, full of preservatives and other additives. Their excrement may break down and disappear on its own over time, but I shouldn’t have to look at it and smell it – and risk stepping in it – for the weeks that it takes to disappear naturally. At this time of year, make that months.

You’re being a good pet guardian by walking your dog; be a good neighbour by picking up after her. If you’re letting your dog or cat run free, you don’t know who you’re upsetting until they tell you. If you think your free-roaming pet is holding it in until they come home, think again.

I’ve cleaned up my share: cleaning it up before I step in it, before I mow the grass, before I water my garden. It really shouldn’t be my job.

Bag it or bury it, the point is that it’s your job to Clean. Up. After. Your. Pet.

Then we can all look forward once more to the sweet smelling arrival of Spring.

Wendy Coomber is editor of the Ashcroft-Cache Creek Journal

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