Open space district adding dog waste receptacles in four parks

Photo from the Midpeninsula Regional Open Space District's webpage.

BY SARA TABIN
Daily Post Staff Writer

Dog lovers visiting land managed by the Midpeninsula Regional Open Space District will soon find it easier to pick up after their pooches’ poop.

After nearly five decades of resisting the idea of installing trash cans, the district is putting out dog waste receptacles on a pilot basis.

Leigh Ann Gessner, district spokeswoman, said the receptacles will be placed in parking areas and at the trailheads on four preserves next month.

Eleven of the district’s 24 public preserves allow dogs, but for now the poop bins will only be installed at Pulgas Ridge, Fremont Older, Windy Hill and Thornewood Open Space Preserves. Those locations see the most dog use because they are close to cities, said Gessner.

District employees will monitor compliance and evaluate the program before the district decides whether to expand the cans to more locations.

The new program already has one big fan – Woodside Mayor Daniel Yost. He submitted a letter to the open space district’s board to let them know how excited the doggy waste receptacles have made him.

Speaking to the Post, Yost commended the Open Space District for allowing pups on so many of their preserves. But he said he has noted multiple poop-filled bags along the trails when hiking at Pulgus Ridge and Thornewood.

He said he thinks people want to do the right thing, but it isn’t easy when there are no poop bins. Right now, hikers must leave the poop in public or take it away from the park themselves.

“I can attest that putting a bag of warm poop in your car on a hot day makes for a very smelly ride home,” he said.

Yost said one of Woodside’s parks had a similar issue with poop and poop bags a few years back. After the city installed a combined poop bag dispenser and trash bin, the problem went away, said Yost.

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