Rubbish Removal On Dog Walks: A Powerful Antidote To Depression
The people who live in Ross-shire County in the Scottish Highlands are treated to an idyllic landscape every day. It’s a beautiful mountainous region with a rugged seascape so visually breathtaking it seems to be begging to be put on a postcard. However, there’s a problem! This magnificent landscape been mired in recent years with unsightly rubbish removal in the form of littering and fly tipping.
Some of the more common rubbish removal found on Ross-shire litter picks has been plastic food and beverage packaging, beer cans, and underwear (we didn’t ask why!). On one litter pick, residents cleared more than three tonnes of rubbish removal including the most common items, plus mattresses, old tyres, furniture, and black bags full of waste removal from homes.
The dog walking citizens of Ross-shire have come to the rescue with a simple but very effective solution to this rubbish removal crisis which had been until recently overtaking their beautiful home. The idea evidently started with a simple post on Facebook by a dog walker urging her fellow dog walkers to take along a bag when they walk their dog and clear some rubbish. The post went viral and there are now more than one hundred participants. The effort has been dubbed, “My Walk, My Bag.”
This type of effort covers more ground than a traditional litter pick, plus it happens every day! According to reporting in the Ross-shire Journal, one participant said the “My Walk, My Bag” programme is going “brilliantly!” Other news reports indicate the “My Walk, My Bag” idea has already spread to other areas in Scotland, England, Wales, and as far away as Australia. There are even people in the United States talking about starting their own “My Walk, My Bag” programme.
Why has the simple idea of clearing a bag of rubbish removal on your dog walk been so contagious?
In fact, a DOUBLE DOSE OF FEEL GOOD HORMONES seem to be at play!
The participants in the “My Walk, My Bag” programme are experiencing a release of feel good happy hormones in not one, but TWO ways. First, being out and about with your favorite pooch is enough to send your serotonin and dopamine levels soaring! Moreover, it’s been scientifically proven that merely petting your dog or watching your dog play greatly reduces cortisol, the most potent stress hormone. People who share their lives with canines are more relaxed, have lower blood pressure, have fewer heart attacks, and live longer!
The second big dose of feel good hormones comes from being a good samaritan while clearing rubbish removal! If you’ve heard of a “jogger’s high,” or an “artist’s high,” this is a “helper’s high!” It happens for the same underlying reason. The act of litter picking, i.e. doing something good for society at large, stimulates the brain to release a surge of endorphins, oxytocin, serotonin, and dopamine. And… here’s what’s even more fascinating. In experiments, when participants are asked to simply remember their good samaritan acts, they get a mild release of these same feel good hormones! Thus, it has a long term effect and just remembering the rubbish removal efforts can actually get someone out of a funk.
No wonder the “My Walk, My Bag” has been so contagious! This good samaritan dogophilic rubbish removal activity makes people happy. Further, the activity becomes addictive in the same way that jogging, gardening and cuddling is because of the same type of feel good hormonal release. You always want to repeat what makes you feel good and most people like to tell everyone about feel good stuff…. unless it’s a great skinny dipping hole… then shhhh!
It looks like the latest post on the Highland Dog Blog is urging all “My Walk, My Bag” programme participants to up their game a bit more. It looks like the goal is to urge participants to take an extra bag on the last weekend in every month, plus the following Monday, and clear a bit more rubbish removal than normal. Participants are then being urged to post “brag about your bag” pictures and descriptions, along with adorable dog mugs of course! These requests are all made in the name of Selkie, a photogenic black and white pooch just oozing with irresistible charisma.
Zero Waste Scotland has estimated that two hundred and fifty million rubbish removal items are littered each year in Scotland. Another sixty-one thousand items are fly tipped! They also estimate this costs about £53 million to tidy up so these Ross-shire dog walking residents are not only making their home beautiful again, they are saving their councils and fellow citizens a lot of money.
While you’re out on your next dog walk, contemplate this about your own rubbish removal at your home. If you put your rubbish out for the council bin men to clear, most of it will be headed to the landfills. There, it will slowly rot under anaerobic conditions which releases copious amounts of methane gas, carbone dioxide, heavy metals, PCBs, and other environmental toxins into the air, water, and ground. You can avoid this by switching to Clearabee’s rubbish removal service.
Clearabee is a private on demand rubbish removal company that diverts NINETY PERCENT of all the rubbish they collect from landfills. Instead of taking the rubbish to the landfills, they instead take it to places that will reuse and resale it, recycling it, or upcycle it. So, this one simple change in your life will contribute significantly to solving our rubbish removal crisis!
Time to walk the dog… don’t you see her cute little tail wagging?! Don’t forget your bag… and please pass this amazing idea on!