Pine Knoll Shores addresses growing concern over pet waste

PINE KNOLL SHORES, N.C. (WNCT) — Pine Knoll Shores Police Department held a public forum Tuesday to talk about dog waste in the community.

Mayor Ken Jones said the issue is not just an inconvenience but also a safety concern.

Pet waste is an environmental hazard that also draws wild animals like coyotes into the community.

Pine Knoll Shores has already had an issue with coyotes this year.

“We have a lot of wildlife issues in Pine Knoll Shores,” said police Chief Ryan Thompson. “I think because we have the 300-mile Roosevelt National Forest that’s right in the middle of our community. So that’s a perfect habitat for a lot of these animals. So we tend to have more wildlife issues than everybody else.”

But some residents said the solution is easy if you just follow the law.

“They provide bags, and it’s a very simple thing,” said Bill Flexman, Pine Knoll Shores resident. “I mean you put your hand in the bag, you pick it up, and you pull it over the bag.”

The police department was alerted to the issue through social media and decided to follow up on it to give residents an opportunity to speak their minds.

“Obviously our first step is to try to educate. educate,” said Thompson. “See if there’s an easy issue to identify such as maybe we need to put out some stations that have pet bags and some pet waste disposal containers.”

Pet waste disposal laws are already in effect for the area but are often ignored.

Chief Thompson said his department will resort to writing tickets if the issue is not addressed.

The police department will continue to hold public forums for upcoming community issues.

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