• Maitland residents tired of dodging dog poop want enforcement


    MAITLAND, Fla. - A Labor Day walk in the park for Samantha Cranis and her daughter means dodging dog poop.

    Cranis says she picks up after her own, but there are other owners who don't pick up after their pooches.

    "It's a beautiful park, and poop on the floor is frustrating," Cranis said.

    That's exactly why the Maitland City Council is exploring ways to encourage pet owners to do their duty.

    In a city full of lakes, officials are worried the wayward waste is hurting the environment.

    "It really is a harbinger of virus, bacteria, disease," Elizabeth Schneider-Peele said.

    Schneider-Peele just finished her term with the city's parks and recreation department.

    She and Vice Mayor Linda Frosch would like to see "waste management" taught to kids in the classroom.

    "A lot like how kids have to tell their parents to put their seat belt on in the car," Schneider-Peele said.

    A proposed school class would also teach them to tell their parents to pick up after their pet.

    "It could go quite far," Schneider-Peele said.

    The proposal is getting mixed reactions.

    I think there (are) far better things to learn than pick up dog poop," Cranis said.

    "I think kids would tell their parents if they knew it was wrong," resident Marilyn Schwartz said.

    A second idea being tossed around is imposing city fines on offenders.

    Orange County already has one, but it is rarely enforced.

    The mayor says it's all still being researched.

    "We want this to be a showcase for Maitland. If it's littered it detracts from the beauty at large," Schneider-Peele said.

    The Maitland City Council has yet to officially put the issue on the agenda.

    Officials said it's still being studied before any decisions are made.

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    Maitland residents tired of dodging dog poop want enforcement