If your dog poops, you must scoop. Most people understand that. But for those that don't, DNA testing is about to make it a lot more difficult to leave behind Fido's filth. The Freakonomics guys proposed dog DNA testing as a solution for NYC's streets being riddled with poop back in 2005, and now it's becoming a reality.
The Avalon Bay Community complex in Rockville Centre, Long Island, is set to become the first building in New York to use genetics to bust dog owners who fail to pick up after their dogs. When people with dogs move into the building, they must get a swab of salivia from their pet, which is then submitted to a registry at a canine DNA company, like BioPet Vet Lab, in Tennessee.
If a groundskeeper finds poop, a sample would be collected and sent to the lab, where testing would reveal the offending resident's identity. That person is then fined up to $100. Call it CSI: Turd City. Or maybe it's more of a sitcom: When the dog poop DNA testing was proposed for a building in Baltimore, one resident said, “It’s absolutely ridiculous. I feel like I'm living in a 'Seinfeld' episode."
Genetics-based testing to crack down on people who don't clean up after their dog sounds like a good idea. According to BioPet, an average dog creates over 250 pounds of poop per year. Now, think of how much of that is in New York. Plus, getting fined sure beats the alternative punishment methods.