One Year Later: Dog DNA Used To Track Feces
by Phil McIlrath, KDLT News
February 01, 2013 8:01 AM
One year ago, KDLT first reported on a Sioux Falls property owner that was fed up with Dog waste littering their grounds.
The company implemented a program that collected DNA samples from all the dogs of the residents who owned them in their rental complexes, so that if a discarded dropping was found, it could be traced to the owner and they subsequently received a fine.
As you might figure, it caused quite a stir and even some controversy.
"It was an eyesore for everybody and, pet owners and non-pet owners alike,"said Midwest Property Services Manager, Lisa Liston.
One year ago, this was how the grounds of Boulder Point, a rental town home development in western Sioux Falls, looked.
"It only took a few to make a huge mess and we had to do something about it,"said Liston.
And something they did, which surprised many. Going C-S-I style to track down renters who didn't scoop their canines poop.
"It went really well,"said Liston. "You can't fight DNA. It's their pet!"
Everyday, property managers walk the grounds looking for discarded dung. In the last year, out of 200 animals between five properties, only 29 citations have been issued.
For most pet owners they think the program is working.
"Overall, do you think this is a good deal?" "I think it is one of the best ever,"said Dave.
But there are also those who disagree.
"I think it's a stupid Idea,"said Tyler Soyer
Tyler has lived at Boulder Creek for two years and owns two dogs. He feels residents should just be responsible and isn't too keen on the idea of submitting his dog's DNA to management. He says he still hasn't.
"Do you think the program has actually improved the property?""No,"said Tyler. "There is poop everywhere."
Even those without pets are skeptical the program has improved the grounds.
"It seems to get better if they send out a flyer that says they're going to enforce more, but like anything that only lasts so long,"said Scott Westhoff.
Despite praise or skepticism from residents, management says they're happy so far.
"There will be weeks when we can walk the property and not see any waste,"said Liston.
In the past year, response to the program has been overall positive and other property owners in the Sioux Falls area are beginning to take notice.
"Given some more time there will be more companies that will come on board with it,"said Liston.
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