It's something all dog owners have to deal with at some point while walking their pets. Fortunately, most in New Jersey are really good at cleaning up after their pets and take the responsibility of owning a dog seriously.

However, there are some common sense things that tend to get missed from time to time. One of which is knowing what barrel to throw your dog's waste away in.

On the positive side, it's good that these particular dog owners are carrying around poop bags with them. It's much better to do that than leave it behind on the sidewalk or someone else's property.

Unfortunately, there are a few dog owners that are rude and feel there's no need to clean up after their pets. I mean, it's part of the responsibility that comes with dog ownership. If you're really that lazy and inconsiderate not to clean up after them, then it speaks volumes of what kind of person you really are.

Simply put: Clean up
Mike Brant - Townsquare Media

But back to those who do clean up after their pets. There is one dilemma we tend to face after our pets take care of business. Where do we throw out the poop bag that's now full?

It can be tough when it comes to certain neighborhoods since most don't have public garbage cans. And sometimes it's just annoying to have to walk it back home with you and put it in your own garbage. Completely understandable on all counts.

However, it's important to pay attention to where you're discarding the poop bag. This is especially important when it comes to your neighbor's personal garbage cans.

Garbage truck
Hopfphotography, ThinkStock

Now, this isn't necessarily a problem during most of the week, but it does tend to be an issue on mornings garbage is being collected. And with so many garbage cans lined up along the road, it might be really tempting just to throw the bag away in any one of those before the homeowner brings them back off the street. But be careful of that as it could make you almost as bad as those who refuse to pick up after their pet in the first place.

If it's a neighborhood that has those automatic garbage trucks where the claw picks up the barrel, you might just be OK. As long as the garbage hasn't been picked up yet, the poop bag shouldn't end up back with the homeowner. Now, I'm not saying I endorse this, but rather that it's important to pay attention to whether the garbage was picked up or not.

If the garbage was already picked up, then absolutely under all circumstances do not throw the bag away in their barrel. Because then you become that rude dog owner who's now dumping their dog's waste onto their neighbor who will now have to deal with having it in their possession up until the next garbage pickup. And believe me, they don't want to deal with the smell or mess that you left behind.

Trash Bin Ready for Pickup

This is made worse with towns that don't have automatic trucks for garbage collection. In that case, garbage men might just skip over the poop bag and grab the bags of garbage instead, leaving it behind for the homeowner. The same could be said for recycling barrels since your pet's waste doesn't belong there in the first place.

As much as we hate to do it, you're better off hanging onto the poop bag until you get to a public garbage can to throw it out. And if that's not possible, then bring it home and use your own garbage. Yes, that doesn't sound pleasant, but it's a lot worse when leaving it for someone else to deal with your pet's mess.

For most dog owners that do this, I'm sure it's completely unintentional. You are trying to do the right thing by cleaning up after your pet, which is much better than those who can care less about doing anything at all.

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So please just consider this as a friendly PSA to be aware of your surrounding garbage cans and to make sure you don't accidentally make your pet's business someone else's business.

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