Mar 24, 2013

Dog waste becoming a problem at Greenville-Union Cemetery

GREENVILLE – Dick O’Brien, superintendent at Greenville-Union Cemetery, has been noticing an increasing problem with dog waste lately. Local residents and their canine friends have been welcome at the cemetery for a long time, but that may soon change if dog owners don’t clean up after their pet.

Throughout the spring and summer, a hundred or more people use the roads in the cemetery for walking, running and bike riding. Many of these patrons also bring their dogs. O’Brien and his staff have received complaints about dogs defecating on gravesites. “It’s disrespectful,” he said. The superintendent doesn’t want to ban dogs from the cemetery, but will if the problem doesn’t cease.

Those who enter the cemetery should be aware of the rules regarding dogs as they are posted at each entrance. By law, pet owners are required to keep their dog on a leash and clean up any messes. The signs also point out that dog waste “is a threat to the health of our children. Degrades our town. Transmits disease.”

O’Brien also asks that dog owners bringing their pets to the cemetery should take the waste home with them. “The trash cans are for flowers and paper trash,” he said.

He understands it is only a few people that mess it up for everyone else. “If I catch them, I will tell them to get out and stay out,” O’Brien said. He is also asking persons using the cemetery to keep an eye out for violators.

O’Brien and his staff will monitor the issue throughout the spring and summer and if it doesn’t get better he believes the ultimate course of action is to ban dogs from the cemetery.


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