Pets

Dagney’s Thoughts on Poop

How to create a positive experience

Brenda Mahler
Apr 14 · 5 min read
Image from author’s photo album

Listen up! This is something humans need to know. Us dogs need space. That’s right, you think putting us on a leash, escorting us to a rock and pausing is enough to activate our bowels. You should know it doesn’t work that way. It takes time and sometimes a little ritual.

I’ve watched my humans each morning. Dad drinks a cup of coffee and disappears behind the door for a few moments to do his deed. Every morning like clockwork. He has a system. Mom is more sporadic so when her time arrives, time is of the essence. However, nobody gives any thought to the needs of a dog. We are not all the same. We all have different patterns.

Thankfully, my folks have been paying attention. As a puppy their expectations were unrealistic. It was like once out the door, they thought I would perform. But it doesn’t work that way for them, and it certainly doesn’t doesn’t work that way for me. The conditions have to be right. Once they identified my routine, mornings became less stressful. Now they know in an ideal environment the event can be expediated.

Here’s my routine. I like to walk a little to loosen up. After smelling a couple rocks and trees, I am able to narrow down my target. Grass relaxes me allowing the process to move quicker, feels more natural. Number one occurs easily almost anywhere. In fact, I love to make my presence known so I piddle a little every few feet to let other dogs know I have been here. Number two is different.

Carlo Siracusa, director of Small Animal Behavior Service understands us dogs gotta smell our surroundings.

I am a lady so privacy, please. Have some decorum. You don’t leave the door open so why should I be expected to expose myself in public. A tall tree, behind a car, or a bush provides some protection from prying eyes and safety from intruders. Nobody wants to be on display during such intimate moments. Some people call it hiding; I like to think of it as security during a vulnerable moment.

Allow us space and time for our routines. Some people read on the toilet. Others check email. All I ask for is time and space to calm my sensibilities. You will know when I am ready when I pause and begin to sniff. Then I will circle a small area three times, always going in the same direction.

Once I begin, pay attention. Mom sometimes starts talking and misses all the clues. There is nothing worse than being jerked away in the middle of the process. Have some compassion.

I learned something most of you probably don’t know. Must of us dogs like to poop “with the body being aligned along the north-south axis under calm magnetic field conditions.”

Mom is great about helping me clean up. She carries pink, scented bags on her leash to pick up my poo. I really appreciate it because I do not have an opposable thumb so it is basically impossible for me to clean up after myself. Unless I use my mouth and that ain’t happening!

Lately, I’ve noticed those little fragrant bags sitting beside the paths where we walk. What is that all about? Come on people, even with the scented kind, they start to smell after a while. Yesterday, I say one on a picnic table. Really!? Don’t make us look bad, we are not wild animals like cows and horses who just deposit waste behind them when they walk. Put the bags in the garbage.

Image from author’s photo album

Mom’s cool! Except the other day we had a little mishap. She bent down to bag my deposit and I kicked dirt in her face. I thought we had a system. She should know by now that kicking is part of my procedure.

The thing I love most about Mom is that she knows the importance of a good party. Everyday we celebrate the experience, never allowing it to become mundane. While I run around, she offers praise and always announces to Dad that we had a success. It makes me feel loved.

Thanks for listening and hopefully, the next time your dog takes you for a walk, these words of wisdom will help create a positive experience.

Disclaimer. Dagney asked me to post this article for her. When I noticed she had shared information from research, I added sources in an attempt to keep her from being accused or sued for plagiarism. Can a dog be sued? Anyway, thanks for the read. — Mom

Read more of Dagney’s stories, A Dog Who Thinks She’s Human

MuddyUm

Bootleg Humor. Since 1720.

Sign up for MuddyUm' s The Real Dirt

By MuddyUm

Infecting the World with Humor -- Best of the MuddyUm Humorists  Take a look.

By signing up, you will create a Medium account if you don’t already have one. Review our Privacy Policy for more information about our privacy practices.

Check your inbox
Medium sent you an email at to complete your subscription.

Brenda Mahler

Written by

Real life person sharing real life stories to inspire and help learn to love ourselves and others. Let me introduce myself https://medium.com/about-me-stories

MuddyUm

MuddyUm

Bootleg Humor Since 1720

Brenda Mahler

Written by

Real life person sharing real life stories to inspire and help learn to love ourselves and others. Let me introduce myself https://medium.com/about-me-stories

MuddyUm

MuddyUm

Bootleg Humor Since 1720

Medium is an open platform where 170 million readers come to find insightful and dynamic thinking. Here, expert and undiscovered voices alike dive into the heart of any topic and bring new ideas to the surface. Learn more

Follow the writers, publications, and topics that matter to you, and you’ll see them on your homepage and in your inbox. Explore

If you have a story to tell, knowledge to share, or a perspective to offer — welcome home. It’s easy and free to post your thinking on any topic. Write on Medium

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store