I know more than any person should about dog poo bags.
If you think that electric cars are a swizz, wait until you take a deep dive into dog poo bags. Luckily for you, I’ve saved you the bother 😉
What I discovered is that there’s A LOT of shady green-washing going on in the dog poo bag business.
I’ll break it down:
- compostable doesn’t mean what you think it does
- biodegradable doesn’t mean what you think it does
- eco-friendly means absolutely diddly squat
- Dog poo bags contribute more to rouge microplastics than your brain can compute
If you think I’m being dramatic – go onto Amazon now – plug in ‘Biodegradable Dog Poo Bags’. When I did this search, there was not one fully compostable, biodegradable offer on the first page. NOT ONE. These suppliers are using marketing spiel like
‘plant based blend’, 100% biodegradable (means nothing), Microplastic free, and the old classic, ‘Environmentally Friendly’.
The reason this has taken so long to sort out (and BOY is it still baffling that there are plastic dog poo bags for sale) is because it’s problematic. Just like the whole toilet paper thing. The environmentally-friendly version must be better and cheaper than the alternative or nobody will adopt it. I know this because it was the topic of my first university lecture in Environmental Economics.
Why Dog Poo Bags Matter
They don’t matter anymore than eliminating the use of any other single use plastics but with a massive surge in dog ownership in the UK, the problem of dog poo bags has escalated in quite a considerable way. If we had a baby boom and suddenly there were 50% more nappies going into landfill, we’d have a pretty grim problem on our hands.
If you’re a dog field owner, dog walker, doggie day care facility or boarding kennel, you have an unenviable insight into just what full dog poo bags by volume look like. Rather than the 3-a-day you pop in your household waste bin, we see it by the wheelie-bin – and that’s a whole lot of plastic.
A lot of dog poo bags used un the UK are still at least partially plastic – almost all dog poo bags go into landfill and unless you’re an environmental conspiracy theorist, you know the rest.
If you start reading the small print on your dog poo bag packaging you’ll find some pretty confusing guff (AKA eco-babble) – designed to make you think you’ve made the right choice for the environment.
Why Dog Poo Bags Need to Be Better
A frog once said, “it’s not easy being green”. Well he was right – it really can be downright unpleasant if you’re a dog owner. A lot of the cornstarch dog poo bags we have tried just don’t do the job. They stretch too easily, they get weird and slimy, you can poke your finger through them at the most annoying phase of dog poop extraction.
Many of them also come with unnecessary packaging and that’s just naughty or lazy or both. Who knows.
200 dog poo bags per month is 2400 a year.
The trouble is that the plastic poo bags are cheap…. really cheap
You can get a bumper pack of 200 dog poo bags from Pets at Home for £1.50 plus £3.95 p&p. That’s 3p a bag give or take. Most cornstarch bags will be 14p-20p once you include shipping – depending how many you buy and that doesn’t guarantee quality or it’s eco-credentials.
So you can see – if you’re on a budget or simply don’t like paying more than you have to for something that just has no fun value to it at all, then the cheap option could be appealing.
We used to think that about eggs. Now most people wouldn’t even consider the ‘Cheep’ and cheerful version for a second. Once you know, you know.
Finding Decent Dog Poo Bags
In my quest to find a credible solution to my dog poo bag dilemma, I talked to a lot of people about dog poo bags. We all agreed. The eco ones just didn’t cut it when it came to scooping a Labrador sized double-hander. I refused to be defeated.
I decided I needed a subscription service. I just don’t want to think about dog poo bags. I want them to always be there and I want them to be good quality.
So, I was thrilled to find a few services that offered eco-friendly dog poo bag subscriptions but having got this far in my quest, I decided to delve into the small print. ARGGGHHHHHH.
I stopped reading after the paragraph where they were banging on about not using ANY unnecessary packaging yet in the pictures, the neatly packaged rolls were wrapped in tissue paper and sealed with a fancy branded sticker. Plus, they were too expensive.
There are a few subscription services on the market but many fell down on testing:
- Not robust enough
- Weird smelling (I don’t trust weird smells)
- The wrong quantities for our house
- Expensive shipping costs
The Best Dog Poo Bags We’ve Found
It’s a short list but these are our two favourite brands right now.
You can buy them on subscription from Amazon, but I’d test them out first to see if they suit you first.