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Israel Testing Doggie DNA to Stop Owners in Their Tracks

Dog droppings not picked up in Jerusalem will be tested, and owners fined

Hannah Dreyfus
February 18, 2014

Who let the dogs out? Or rather, who didn’t pick up after their dogs? Israeli authorities are developing a fool-proof way to find out: DNA testing.

The Jerusalem Municipality announced today that it is launching a pilot program to check the DNA of dog droppings not picked up in order to find—and fine—the owners, the Jerusalem Post reports. The initiative is part of an attempt to clean up the city’s streets and improve public health, since dog droppings can easily transfer diseases—of the 11,000 dogs registered in Jerusalem, eight percent have not been vaccinated.

“Our goal is not to increase the fines for dog owners, but to reduce, as much as possible, the local dog droppings hazard,” Dr. Zohar Dworkin, Director of Veterinary Services at the Jerusalem Municipality, told the Jerusalem Post.

Currently, it is illegal and ticket-earning to leave droppings unattended to, but that hasn’t exactly solved the problem. The program will create a database with the DNA from paw prints of Jerusalem’s canines. When a piece of excrement is left in the street, the database will help Israeli authorities identify the dog, and penalize the owner accordingly.

With this new no-poo-left-behind policy in place, Jerusalem residents will hopefully enjoy a more sanitary, odor-free environment.

Hannah Dreyfus is an editorial intern at Tablet.