Discipline: Social, Behavioral, and Economic Sciences
Subcategory: Social Sciences/Psychology/Economics
Room: Park Tower 8212
Sergio Lozoya - University of New Mexico
This research seeks to understand the effectiveness of the There is no Poop Fairy campaign through a public survey of dog owners. The There Is No Poop Fairy campaign was initiated in Albuquerque, New Mexico, in 2014, with the goal of getting dog owners to pick up and properly dispose of their dogs’ waste. The Rio Grande is contaminated with E. coli bacteria that originates in part from dog waste, which is carried to the river through storm water. Levels of E. coli in the Rio Grande have decreased dramatically within the past few years, coincident with the campaign. The main purpose of the study is to better understand whether or not the There Is No Poop Fairy Campaign may have contributed to the decrease in E. coli by surveying dog owners who live in the focus area of the campaign about their exposure to the campaign information and any subsequent changes in behavior. The research also investigates other issues such as dog owners’ feelings of responsibility in picking up their dogs’ waste (i.e., is it up to them or somebody else?) and the acceptability in leaving dog poop behind in public spaces (e.g., parks and open space settings). This is a nonprobability survey and will be conducted using convenience sampling methods. To date, there have been approximately 50 survey participants, with the goal of reaching 500-1000 participants by December 1st, 2018. Preliminary results indicate that the majority of the sample population is familiar with the There Is No Poop Fairy campaign and feels positive about its educational value in raising environmental awareness. The findings will be of interest to other scholars in this area of research as well as city and county officials and scientists who are interested in the effectiveness of voluntary community campaigns related to environmental and public health.
References: Carter, S. B. (2016). Establishing a framework to understand the regulation and control of dogs in urban environments: a case study of Melbourne, Australia. SpringerPlus, 5(1), 1190. Vanessa I. Rohlf, Pauleen C. Bennett, Samia Toukhsati & Grahame Coleman (2010) Why Do Even Committed Dog Owners Fail to Comply with Some Responsible Ownership Practices?
Funder Acknowledgement(s): This research was funded by an NSF/CREST grant
Faculty Advisor: Caroline Scruggs, firstname.lastname@example.org
Role: I have conducted the literature review, created and administered all surveys, and will analyze the data. I have done this all with the help of my board and mentor.