SPRINGFIELD, Mo. – Two Springfield apartment complexes, owned by TLC Properties, began running DNA tests on tenants’ dogs on Oct. 1. The goal of these tests is to match left behind feces to the offending canine, ultimately discouraging messes being left on the property.
“It’s simply for the health and safety of our residents,” said TLC Properties Marketing Director, Angela Frizell.
TLC Properties is working with Poo Prints, a service by Tennessee-based BioPet Laboratories Inc, to make this happen. For Poo Prints to work, the dog owning residents swab the cheek of their dogs to collect a DNA sample. The sample is then sent off and securely entered into the DNA World Pet Registry database.
The properties plan to finish swabbing and cataloging the dog DNA by Oct. 30. Then, after mailing Poo Prints a nickel-sized fecal sample using the waste sample collection kit, it will be possible to match the feces to a dog in the DNA database.
“The ultimate goal is to improve the overall health of the community by eliminating the hazards of the pet waste. It’s not good for the community to have it out there,” said Frizell. “It’s also, as a secondary and a benefit, is to just deter the waste from being left in the community. It allows our groundskeepers to focus on the betterment of the community as a whole rather than picking up pet waste.”
TLC Properties have tried to implement the program with previous properties.
“It had just kind of gone to the wayside. So when we saw the opportunity at the two properties we’re onboarding it, we thought it would be a great time to bring it back in,” said Frizell.
According to a letter distributed to residents last month, if Poo Prints finds that a tenant’s dog left behind feces on the property, the tenant will face a $100 fine and a “lease violation.”
“We’ve got dog stations readily available with bags to eliminate the waste. So we hope our residents will see the improvement in their community and continue to use the program,” said Frizell.