I have had several readers ask me already if the rumors are true about the dog poo problem in Paris. It was inevitable that I would post about this, so here it is. And yes, the rumors are true; it is a problem here, and Parisians are well aware of it.
Here are our neutral observation: there is dog poo everywhere in the city. The areas most prevalent with poo are near parks or less touristy places. I haven’t found myself looking down while walking so much before, because I know if I let my guard down, I will step in poo. It’s unfortunate for those that do step in it, because I bet it’s an unpleasant mess to deal with.
Nick and I have witnessed a couple of dog owners picking up their dog’s poo, but have never witnessed anyone neglecting to do so. We wonder if that happens only when no one is around, but who really knows and who knows why those that neglect to pick up the poo do what they do. Nevertheless, the city does clean up the streets often by spraying the streets with water hoses and there are cars that come by and sweep and clean not only old crusted poo, but also cigarette butts and litter.
Recently I saw on Google news some French students launched an anti-dog poo mobile app. The idea is to shame pet owners and authorities into getting the problem solved. The app is called Poople Maps. The app allows users to mark poo when they see it by geolocation. This then will create a flag and flash where the dog excrement is at online, reminding authorities that the problem still exists.
I don’t know if this will work, but it’s a great effort these students have put together in trying to make their city’s streets cleaner. It’s an act of care, and at least they’re trying to do something about it. Kudos to these IT students!