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Residents protest excessive dog feces

Feb. 15, 2001

Students claim dog excrement violates apartment bylaws

By JEFF SCHELDT

Assistant City Editor

The stuff hit the fan Wednesday when residents at the Casablanca apartment complex were involved in a feud pitting neighbor against neighbor's dog.

To express their disgust and frustration with the prolific piles of poop outside their apartment, several residents at the complex placed signs bearing the words 'dog crap here' near deposits and wrapped the courtyard in yellow 'caution' tape.

'Each sign represents one pile,' Becky Drennen, a Houston junior, said.

'We put out 50 stakes and that's still not enough,' Kim Jones, an Austin sophomore, said.

The women believe that dog owners in the complex should clean up after their dogs or take them to answer nature's call somewhere else besides the common area.

'The courtyard is for everyone's usage, but I don't feel I can use the grill or the benches or even check the mail without stepping in it,' Drennen said. 'It gets all over the carpet, and there's this aroma.'

Some of the aroma may be the mark of Tripper, a 3-and-a-half-year-old yellow lab who, according to his owner, defecates three times a day -- sometimes in the courtyard.

His owner is Brett Turner, a Belton sophomore. Turner believes that as an owner of a condo in the complex, he has a right to use the courtyard as well.

'We own this place. We have a right to use the facilities,' Turner said. 'They can quit being haters about it and just ask us about it. We've never seen those girls before.'

Turner said he wasn't notified of the womens' irritation before the display in the courtyard Wednesday, but he believes that a solution can be found. 'I'll just buy a little shovel, scoop it up and throw it in the ivy,' he said.

Turner's roommate had another suggestion -- a way in which Tripper can spread the wealth. 'We'll go across the street and fertilize our neighbor's yard,' Ryan Brewer, a Belton sophomore, said.

K and S Properties manages Casablanca and oversees the enforcement of bylaws at several area properties. The issue is addressed in the complex's bylaws.

'They're supposed to take the dogs to the exterior perimeter for defecation,' Tim Sherry of K and S said.

Condominium owners such as Turner and Brewer are not subjected to the same rules when it comes to where their dog can do the deed; however, Sherry said they are expected to take their dogs outside the inner courtyard and clean up after their pets.

'It's fine to let your dog use it [the courtyard] just clean up after it,' Drennen said.

The girls, tired of cleaning the waste from their carpet and shoes, said they contacted K and S about the problem, but that no action had been taken. 'K and S said they would take care of it, but we decided to take the matter into our own hands,' Zubeida Khan, a Houston junior, said.

Sherry was unaware of any calls from the girls but said the matter would be handled soon.

'We need to get notices out and talk to some folks,' Sherry said. 'No one should have to clean up after someone else's dog.'