Can Dog Poop Go Into Compost ?
If you were a dog, you would daily listen to your family members quarreling amongst themselves for who would clean up the poop mess you made! But did you know you just pooped black gold? Read How To Compost Dog Poop Or Waste In A Bin At Home.
Is Dog Poop Good Compost?
Your dog might be adorable, but its poop could be hazardous to the environment! It consists of undigested food, and nutrients like carbohydrates, proteins, fats, fibre, etc. The dog could also be infected with worms, parasites, or disease-causing microbes which might enter the waterways and eventually humans and other animals, creating a hazard. Surprisingly, this waste could become a poo-tential fertilizer. You’ll see how.
What Is Composting?
Composting is the process of decomposition of organic waste which converts it into humus which further acts as a superfood for the plants, a soil-binder, and helps eliminate landfills. Turning kitchen waste into fertilizer has been a common practice, but did you know you could also turn your dog’s waste into fertilizer?
A good compost requires good nitrogen to carbon ratio, nitrogen being in higher amounts. Nitrogen-rich materials are wet, and carbon-rich materials are dry in nature.
What materials do you need?
Other materials required are-
- Dog waste
- Grass clippings
- Kitchen waste (fruits and vegetable peels)
- Saw dust
- Fallen leaves and old flowers
How To Compost Dog Poop?
You may choose to compost either indoors using a bin, or in your backyard or garden, depending on the amount of dog waste. You should choose an area that is away from children, pregnant women, pregnant dogs, and other sensitive population that is susceptible to getting infected easily.
If composting in outdoors then-
- Choose a dry area to create the compost pit around 3 to 4 feet deep
- Thoroughly mix the dog poop with sawdust, hay, or dry leaves in a 2:1 ratio and lay in the pit
- Keep adding water and turning the pile until it becomes moist
- Keep adding ingredients and turning the pile until it becomes 2 to 3 feet deep
- Cover the pile with a plastic sheet or a rug
- Since the microbes will be on duty, they would raise the temperature of the pile to around 160° F or 71° C. This high temperature is necessary to kill pathogens. You need to regularly record the temperature and once it falls, it is time to thoroughly turn the pile using a fork
- If the pile does not heat up, add nitrogen-rich waste to it
- You need to repeat the process of recording the temperature using a thermometer and turning the pile several times until the pile stops producing heat – this is an indication of the compost maturity – which might take up to 6 weeks
- Cure the final compost for a few months to a year to stabilize the pH
- After 6 to 8 weeks, you would get a dark-brown crumbly substance ready to be in use as a fertilizer.
You may also perform the same process if using a compost bin indoors.
What precautions should be taken to compost dog poop?
- Since the dog poop might consist of parasites or worms, it is not advisable to apply the compost to plants meant for human consumption, but you may dog poop as fertilizer for flowers.
- Avoid using poop from unknown dogs
- Always wear rubber gloves while handling the dog waste and the compost formed, and wash hands after handling the waste
- In rare cases, the pile might catch fire. Add water, turn the pile, and let it cool down before you cover and leave it
- The compost must reach a temperature between 60 -70° C for the destruction of pathogens
- Keep children, livestock, and other animals away from the compost since it may still consist of disease-causing pathogens
The next time your dog poops, turn it into black gold. Also, send selfies with your dog(s) at email@example.com.