We are fortunate to live in such a beautiful area with so many opportunities for outdoor recreation. While we all enjoy spending time outdoors, we need to be mindful of the other people we share our public lands with.

There are a lot of dog owners in the Bozeman area, and it make sense that people want to take their pets with them when they go for a hike, or spend time at the river. At most places, plastic bags are available in case you need to clean up after your dog. That's all fine and dandy until the trails that we all love so much are lined with little plastic bags full of dog poop.

Bozeman resident, Calli Raine Rodriguez posted the following on Facebook.

It’s getting really old the amount of people, who just leave their dogs crap behind in a bag on the trail. Guarantee if I see you do this, I will say say something. Take care of the place you recreate.

If you own a dog, it is your responsibility to remove those bags. It shouldn't fall on forest service workers or other people using the trails. I get it, no one wants to put a stinky bag of poo in their vehicle, but if you're a pet owner, it's something you have to do.

If you're worried about it stinking up your car, bring a smell-proof container to put the bag in. It's not much to ask, right? We all need to do our part to take care of this beautiful place we call home. If you take your dogs with you hiking, you should be prepared to clean up and pack out whatever mess they make.

We all love Montana and are fortunate to live here. Don't ruin someone else's experience by not being a responsible steward of the land. Please clean up after your pets.