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Friday, March 4, 2016

Good morning,

I just have a question about using plastic. I have a dog and use a plastic bag to gather and dispose of the poop. I know it is not the most environmentally effective way of disposal, so what else can I use that is not going to cost me an arm or a leg to buy? -Lisa

This is an interesting question, Lisa. One way to think about it is that if you are using plastic bags you got from the grocery store you are already re-using a plastic item that you would be throwing away anyway. But if you use reusable grocery bags or you recycle your plastic grocery bags, both of which a lot of people do, then you'll need an environmentally-friendly alternative. Please scroll down for a couple ideas!

Thanks for reading,

Your Living Green editor

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If you are taking a long walk a plastic bag is a great item for picking up pet waste because it is not permeable and keeps your hands perfectly clean, but like you pointed out, it is hardly environmentally-friendly.

Try paper! Not bathroom tissue, but if you use a couple layers of newspaper your hands will still be just a clean and you can fold it up and stuff it in a paper sack. All nice and compact and no plastic sitting in a landfill for 100 years.

There are even brands of biodegradable bags designed specifically for picking up pet waste. The bag feels like plastic, but it is actually made from corn. They are even advertised as being compostable (but be careful about composting pet waste! It's not a good idea to put it in your backyard compost heap of vegetable and yard waste).

But these bags can get a little expensive. The brand I found on the Internet cost twenty bucks for 150 bags. It all depends on if you consider 14 cents per bag a lot of money.

Does anybody else have any good suggestions? Send them in!

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