If you're walking your pup and he/she has to go potty immediately, can you let them go in someone's yard?

We've discussed that you can pay a hefty fine in Illinois if you let your dog poop in a public place and don't clean it up. But often when we walk our dogs, we're trying to give them an outlet to do their business. That business might happen to be in someone's yard.

Not all dog owners who have homes with grassy front lawns will clean up their pup's poops if they let them use the front lawn. So you may be walking your dog and see a pile o' poo in a yard and assume that it's fine for your dog to go potty there too.


You may think it's fine, it's harmless, but if the homeowner decides to start an argument, do they have a foundation?

What Illinois Law Says About It

Some states have a "pooper scooper law" that requires the passing dog owner to pick up the dog's waste, but Illinois does not have a statewide law about it, according to law firm Seidman Margulis & Fairman. Moline, however, does. Moline code says that the accumulation of animal waste can be declared a nuisance and could garner some trouble for the landowner.

In Moline, it's illegal to let your pup go to the bathroom in someone else's yard without picking it up. The code says:

No person owning, harboring, keeping or controlling any dog or cat or other domestic animal or pet shall cause, suffer or allow such animal to soil, defile, defecate on or commit any nuisance on any common thoroughfare, sidewalk, passageway, bypath, play area, park, or any place where people congregate or walk or upon any public property whatsoever, or upon any private property without permission from the property owner.

So you can let your pup go in a yard, but just make sure you have the scoop and the baggie to pick it up.

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