A small town near Madrid, Spain, has an innovative, really weird way to deal with people who don’t pick up after their dogs: Delivering the poop back to the owners.
It’s no joke. In February, Brunete, a small town on the outskirts of Madrid with 10,100 inhabitants, recruited 20 volunteers to patrol the streets, looking for people who let their dogs poop and then walked blithely away, unconcerned with the fate of the pile.
Then, the volunteers would strike, employing a two-pronged attack. First, they’d approach the offenders and casually strike up a conversation with them, probing for information.
“They’d ask them what the dog’s name and pedigree was. With that information they could find out the address of the pooch’s owner from a registered pet database we have,” Brunete’s town hall spokesperson told The Local.
Then, the volunteers would circle back, collect the poop, box it, and deliver it to the homes of the offenders. A cameraman would tag along to record people receiving their dog’s poop in a box, along with a “fine warning.”
Did it work? You bet. The town estimates the amount of poop left on the streets has been reduced by 70 percent. Of course, recording poop on the street is not an exact science.
“We didn’t have volunteers tallying up the poo before and after the campaign; our results are based on what neighbors have told us,” the town hall spokesperson said. “We’re not sure either whether the volume of poo has gone down because they’re more afraid of getting their dogs’ excrement delivered back to them than of being fined.”
It’s a very weird thing to do, to be sure, but it’s only slightly more weird than the town’s first idea, which was this: It drove small, remote-controlled pieces of plastic poop around, accosting people enjoying their day. Some contained the message: “Don’t leave me, pick me up!”
Here’s a video of both techniques in action:
Here’s to you, Brunete.
Via The Local