When it comes to pets visiting the park dogs are by far the most common pet. While dogs are welcome in the park, they can cause the most resource damage if their owners neglect to clean up after them. This means picking up your dog's waste and using the dog waste bins near the trailheads.
Dog waste left along the trail is bad for the environment. The biggest impact is on the water quality of the Chattahoochee. While bacteria are a natural component of the environment, and mostly harmless, certain species of bacteria can cause sickness. E. coli (Escherichia coli bacteria) is a good indicator of the water quality in the river. Over the years the park has partnered with the U.S. Geological Survey, Chattahoochee Riverkeeper, Cobb County Water System, City of Roswell, and Chattahoochee National Park Conservancy to monitor E. coli levels in the Chattahoochee River. The result of this monitoring is the Chattahoochee River BacteriAlert program. Other studies at the park have identified that humans and dogs are the primary causes elevated E. coli levels indicating contamination of the river.
Therefore, dog waste left along the trail or picked up in a bag and pitched into the woods is a real health problem. Remember the river provides over 70% of the metro-Atlanta water supply. High levels of E. Coli and other harmful bacteria makes the cost of cleaning our water supply more expensive. It also can be harmful to your own dog when it takes a drink from the river.
So please "BagandBinIt" when visiting Chattahoochee River NRA with your dog. Help us protect the environment and keep the water supply clean. Students at the Miami Ad School designed new signage and the Chattahoochee National Park Conservancy purchased signs and bins that have been installed at major trailheads. So please practice good dog waste etiquette when you "BagandBinIt" while walking your dog.
Last updated: December 11, 2020