Regulation of the Day 184: Picking up Dog Poop

A Vienna, Austria, man was recently jailed for not picking up after his Great Danes. Having solved Vienna’s other problems, the city council recently passed new dog poop regulations. These include government-employed “Waste Watchers.” According to the Austrian Times, these “work from six a.m. to 11 o’clock at night handing out fines of up to 2,000 Euros for breaches in the law on dumping of waste and fouling of walkways.”

The 52-year old man was fined €1,380. When he told a court he could not afford the fine, he was jailed for two days.

As part of its new dog poop initiative, the government installed plastic bag dispensers throughout the city. Dog owners are required to use the bags to clean up after their dogs and place the final product in government-provided waste bins.

The offending man pleaded that his two Great Danes are simply too much for the plastic bags to handle. Great Danes can weigh as much as 200 pounds, and are prolific eaters.

The man should think about providing his own bags if the city’s aren’t up to the job. It is less than courteous for him to just leave the mess on the sidewalk. But a fine of up to €2,000 and possible jail time? That’s overkill.