Get your Paws on Plastic
A blog post by Marion Montgomery
- The funeral of a glacier: time to pull the emergency brake
- Arran – exploring its hidden gems
- It’s time to take action to reverse climate change
- Tackling Our Unsustainable Cup Consumption
- Cups hitting the ground: what we learned at TRNSMT Festival
- We All Have To Fight The UpStream Battle
- It's rubbish that people have to clean up after litter bugs
- The power of pocket gardens
- Registering your clean up makes a difference
- Tackling climate change starts at home
- Speaking the language of Carbon Literacy
- The life of a Keep Scotland Beautiful intern
- Wheatley Group: two years on and still going strong
- Roadside Litter: Think twice before you chuck
- Our citizen scientists are ready to make waves for Upstream Battle
- Taking a stand on climate change – what actions will you take?
- The Cup Movement will tackle our litter culture head on
- Working across borders to tackle climate change
- Celebrating 25 years of Eco-Schools in Scotland
- Climate change – it’s personal
- Putting young people first for our environment at Keep Scotland Beautiful
- Treading lightly – steps to lower our carbon footprint
- Aunty Babs washes her spoon and so should you
- Climate change: we can all do our bit
- Have yourself a green Christmas
- Shifting up a gear on Scotland’s roadside litter problem
- It’s time to consign our litter problem to the dustbin of history
- We can save our seas by starting at home
- Everyone can do their bit to protect the world – what’s your Goal?
Simple changes can have a big impact: this is the premise behind Paws on Plastic, our group that encourages dog owners to pick up 2 pieces of plastic whilst out walking their beloved hounds.
I founded Paws on Plastic in Stonehaven in November 2018. The inspiration came from my dogs who were always picking up plastic bottles. Once your dog is playing with a bottle, it’s your responsibility to put it in a bin.
The strength of Paws on Plastic is its simplicity. Dog owners are out walking their dogs every day. We see the litter. We have a spare bag in our pocket and it just takes a second to pick up a couple of pieces. No extra time or effort is required.
So many dog owners have been doing this without thinking about it. It’s like our dogs have been trying to tell us to do this for years and now, with the increasing awareness of the dangers of plastic pollution, we’re finally catching on!
Dog owners are a powerful force. With around 9 million dogs in the UK alone, imagine the impact if we all did our own small bit. The instructions are simple – pick items up using a spare poo bag and take them home to empty, into a recycling bin if possible, saving the bag to use again, then post a lovely photo of their dog on our “Paws on Plastic” FaceBook page to celebrate their efforts and spread the word.
Members are responsible for keeping themselves and any accompanying companions safe. All pieces picked up are helping to reduce the amount of plastic ending up in the sea.
Paws on Plastic exemplifies that individual people can have a huge impact. With nearly 8,000 of us (on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram) that’s over 16,000 pieces of litter a day, or almost 6 million pieces a year. Although, as you will see from the Facebook posts, most people pick up more than two pieces each: it can get rather addictive!
Membership is rising at a fantastic rate as awareness grows. We are welcoming members to our main Facebook group from all over the world... in fact from over 50 countries, covering all continents except Antarctica!
We are delighted to collaborate with Keep Scotland Beautiful and its Clean Up Scotland campaign and will be working closely together on campaigns tackling litter and encouraging responsible dog ownership. Additionally, we are really looking forward to a joint presence at the Dog Lover’s Show taking place at the SECC in Glasgow on 7th and 8th September this year.
To join us, look for us on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram.
Is your dog trying to tell you something? Isn’t it time we all listened?