How to Choose Dog Poop Bags – Key Eco Tip

It’s certainly one of the less glamorous parts of being a dog owner, but picking up after your pup’s poop is as important, conscientious and responsible as any other part of owning a dog. For all the love, joy and laughs our dogs provide us with, they’re always going to poop, and you should always be prepared.

With so many dog poop bags on the market, though, it can be hard to know which one you should choose. Terms like ‘biodegradable’, ‘compostable’ and ‘recycled’ get thrown about this way and that, but which ones are right for you and your dog? Read on to find out.

Strong dog poop waste bag with dispenser-3

What are the Types of Dog Poop Bags?

Currently, there are several types of dog poop bags available on the market. These include: non-recyclable, biodegradable, compostable and recycled dog poop bags.

Non-Recyclable (Single-Use Plastic)

Perhaps still the most common dog poop bags are non-recyclable, non-degradable (at least not on a timescale that’s ecologically beneficial) single-use plastic dog poop bags. The reason these are so popular is thanks to their low price and more heavy-duty feel. With the climate crisis in full swing, and with single-use plastics causing problems throughout the world and its oceans, trying to switch away from these is advisable if at all possible.


Biodegradable dog poop bags are increasingly common, and are typically made of materials that break down more easily than non-biodegradable poop bags; biodegradable refers to the fact that they’re broken down using organic processes. As we’ll see shortly, however, just because a dog poop bag is biodegradable doesn’t mean it’s automatically better for the environment.


If you’re looking to choose the most environmentally-friendly option, then you should go for compostable dog poop bags. Typically made from corn starch (or its derivatives) compostable dog poop bags can be put into a home composting set-up to contribute towards the mulch you use in your garden.

Composting your dog’s poop arguably requires a little more work on your part, but if you’re looking to go greener, then it’s certainly the way to go. One important thing to note is that you should only add your dog poop to compost which isn’t going to be used on plants grown for human consumption (like fruit or vegetables).


If composting isn’t an option, but you still want to make at least a little bit of a positive change, environmentally speaking, then recycled dog poop bags are a good option. These are dog poop bags made from recycled rather than virgin (completely new) plastic; by using these bags, you’re at least not introducing any new plastic into the ecosystem. It’s a small change, but a positive one nonetheless.

The Unfortunate Truth (at Least Currently)

We referenced before towards the fact that biodegradable doesn’t necessarily equate to environmentally-friendly regarding dog poop bags. The reason? Dog poop bags thrown into dog poop bins are still almost always sent to landfill.

Biodegradation is notoriously difficult (and in many cases impossible) in the conditions that landfill provides, because the layers of waste make for an anaerobic (without oxygen) environment wherein those organic breakdown processes can’t take place.

Hopefully, moving forward, a more sustainable way to dispose of and process dog poop will become widespread. In the meantime, however, we reiterate that if you want to lessen your dog’s environmental impact, then home composting is your best friend.

Potential Future Methods to Dispose of Dog Poop

There have already been some pretty ingenious dog poop solutions which people have come up with over the past few years. Perhaps none more so than that of street lamps fuelled by dog poop. Yes, you read that right – illumination from bowel evacuation.

Almost five years ago now, a retired engineer named Brian Harper put on his thinking cap to see how the bags of dog poop he saw lying around near his country home could be better put to use. The results were street lamps which, by Brian’s reckoning, could run for up to two hours at a time on only ten dog poop bags. Pretty impressive for a humble poop, we think you’ll agree.

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