The Jerusalem Municipality will set up a DNA database of over 11,000 local dogs to help eradicate dog poo from the city’s streets. Meanwhile, an Israeli company produces a handy device that turns any offending dog feces into odourless dust.
With over 11,000 dogs walking the streets of the Holy City, stepping frequently into dog poop is one problem that seems solvable solved in the near future in Jerusalem. Israel’s daily newspaper Haaretz reports that when Jerusalem dogs have their yearly vaccinations, saliva samples will be taken to later help identify which dogs excreted the offensive poop piles. Once the feces are matched with the recorded dog DNA, the name and location of the dog’s owner will be easily found.
This method of dog tracing through DNA was initiated by Yitzhak Ochayon, Mayor of the Petah Tikva Municipality in 2008. However, problems with local by-laws stopped its full implementation. Haaretz reports that Jerusalem will not have the same by-law problems and dog owners will be compelled to give DNA samples.
A sign about picking up after dogs
Haaretz quotes city veterinarian Dr. Zohar Dvorkin as being positive about the feasibility of the project since approximately 95 percent of the capital's registered dogs are vaccinated. Dvorkin states that once a database is built containing about 80 percent of the registered dogs, inspectors can start photographing and collecting dog excrement.
Once traced, the dog’s owner will receive a fine of nearly US$200. DNA testing costs around US$40 for each dog.
Dodging dog poo while strolling around the streets in Israel’s towns seems to be a national past time. Some councils, wary of sanitation problems, already provide free doggy poo bags, specific sites for dogs to excrete in and encourage residents to carry around pooper scoopers. They also give fines for dogs caught in the act outside of a designated pooping area but catching the owner and issuing a fine becomes complicated.
According to Israel21C, in 2011, an Israeli who was fined for not heedfully collecting their dog feces contacted a well-known biotechnolgy inventor Prof. Oded Shoseyov of the Hebrew University in order to find a better solution to the non-ecological practice of collecting dog droppings in plastic bags.
Professor Shoseyov came up with the idea for a device that collects dog droppings and turns them into odorless ash within seconds. Paulee CleanTec the Israeli company that developed the idea into the AshPoopie device, already has patents in Europe and the United States and hopes to have this compact, mini, portable poop incinerator on the market this year.