How To Compost Dog Poo
Composting your dog’s waste isn’t as straightforward as composting food waste, so we explain the ins and outs of it.
It doesn’t make sense to put dog poo into plastic bags that take hundreds of years to break down, or degradable bags that leave microplastics behind. Compostable BioBags can be composted along with dog waste and will break down in your garden at home.
Recycling dog poo can nourish soil but it can’t go into your home compost with food scraps because using it on your garden, especially to grow food, may pose health risks.
So how do you compost dog poo at home?
Some local councils with food organics garden organics (FOGO) bins accept pet waste in compostable BioBags to keep bins clean and minimise odours.
If you don’t have a FOGO bin, you can still compost your dog’s waste at home, just not in your usual household worm farm or compost bin. Keep it separate. Here’s how:
- Get a large bucket with a handle at the top and cut a hole in the bottom.
- Choose a spot in your garden under a tree or shrub so it benefits from the nutrients.
- Bury the bucket with the sealed lid above the ground.
- Add a big handful of composting worms from your home compost, worm farm, local community gardens, Gumtree or garden store.
- Add carbon in the form of newspaper, toilet rolls or sawdust and aim for 1 part carbon to 2 parts pet manure. Carbon helps break down nitrogen-rich manure.
- Remove the bucket when the manure has broken down into compost and repeat.
Note: If you give your dog worming tablets, wait a couple of weeks before putting it in.
BioBags are made from compostable polymers that leave no toxic residues behind, says BioBag World Australia Director Scott Morton. “A BioBag doesn’t need to be heated to high temperatures to break down. If it doesn’t make it into a compost bin or organics bin, a BioBag will still break down anywhere there is micro-organisms and oxygen, whereas plastic will live on and enter the eco-system for hundreds of years,” Scott said.
Sources: Animal Medicine Australia, Treading My Own Path, Gardening Know How