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Dogs and lawns: a combination that isn't for the faint of heart


Last updated 10/8/2020 at 10:56am

There's nothing quite like stepping in a pile of dog doo while walking across the yard. While this isn't a daily issue for many people, it is for some, such as lawn care professionals. This is why LawnStarter, a leading outdoor services provider, decided to rank the literal crappiest lawns across the U.S. by metro area.

Where are the crappiest lawns in America? They're all over the country and likely on your own street. In fact, Colorado Springs metro area ranked at No. 2. See, we're not talking about yards that look crappy, but about lawns where your dog does his or her business.

LawnStarter mined its own data and surveyed 350 of its yard care pros about the challenges of mowing grass where Fido and Rover rule the roost or at least the yard. They ranked the Crappiest Lawns in America by metro area based on the number of pet waste complaints from our pros divided by the number of mowing jobs, as well as included facts on why it's more than just a nuisance, but a danger to the ecosystem and people's health.

Man's best friend, it turns out, is not universally beloved by the man or woman mowing your lawn - or your neighbors.

Metro areas with the 'crappiest' lawns in America

Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue, WA

Colorado Springs, CO

Toledo, OH

Phoenix-Mesa-Scottsdale, AZ

El Paso, TX

San Diego-Chula Vista-Carlsbad, CA

Buffalo-Cheektowaga-Niagara Falls, NY

Lansing-East Lansing, MI

Asheville, NC

Albany-Schenectady-Troy, NY

Why you should clean up after your dog

Local ordinances require dog owners to pick up after pets because pet feces spread disease. A potential fine has a way of getting you to sit up and take notice - or stoop over with a plastic bag.

But in your yard? Those rules don't apply. But step in it yourself, or worse, if a neighbor or family member steps in it when visiting, and you'll likely find time for your own yard cleanup.

In fact, all that dog waste annoys your neighbors, a LawnStarter survey found, especially when your mutt struts over to their lawns to poop.

Dog poop is terrible for lawns - and water supplies, too. We think of dog waste as a natural fertilizer, but that's not the case. Dog doo does spread disease, can take more than a year to fully decompose, and it (and pet urine) can kill your grass and pollute waterways.

Going beyond the numbers, some of our lawn care pros detailed how all that dog poop affects their jobs:

"The dog waste gets in the mower tires, weed eater and sometimes on the person doing the work."

"You need to charge extra for yards full of doggie poops. It is nasty to run over that, and our equipment is stinky."

"The worst feeling in the world is to be weed eating and you sling a fresh pile of dog poop right in your face."

See the full story from LawnStarter:


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