Deborah Wytinck, who raises sheep on her pasture at Boxwood Road and Fern Road, is trying to get dog owners to stop throwing plastic bags containing their dogs’ poop over her fence. Parasites in dog feces that make their way into the grass could infect the sheep and sicken the animals. (Chris Bush/News Bulletin)

Deborah Wytinck, who raises sheep on her pasture at Boxwood Road and Fern Road, is trying to get dog owners to stop throwing plastic bags containing their dogs’ poop over her fence. Parasites in dog feces that make their way into the grass could infect the sheep and sicken the animals. (Chris Bush/News Bulletin)

Nanaimo sheep farmer voices fears over flung dog feces

Deborah Wytinck worries parasites in dog feces tossed into pasture could infect her sheep

Dog feces flung over her fence has raised the ire of a Nanaimo sheep farmer.

Deborah Wytinck and her husband Don have raised sheep at their farm, located on the end of Fern Road, Boxwood Road and Lang Crescent, for several decades, but as development has encroached around their property, so has the presence of bags of dog poop tossed over the Wytincks’ fence and into their pasture where they graze their sheep.

“We’re right in the middle, surrounded now by houses and, of course, we have one of these silly little pocket parks, which everybody walks their dog to [defecate] it in,” Wytinck said. “Some of them actually pick it up, but then they throw the ruddy bags into our sheep pasture.”

Many of the dog poop bags tossed in the pasture wind up dangling from the branches of hawthorne bushes and small trees on the edge of the property. But others find their way to the ground and Wytinck said wet ground in late winter and early spring is a good environment for worms or other parasites to transfer into the grass and into sheeps’ digestive systems when the animals graze.

“As a consequence, we … put the bags back in the road, with great apologies to my neighbour because she might be the only one who sees them because everybody else, most likely, just drives straight over them,” Wytinck said.

Wytinck put a notice on her fence to educate dog owners and ask them to not dispose of their dogs’ business in her backyard. The Wytincks’ sheep are raised primarily for their wool and as breeding stock, but are also suitable for human consumption.

“They don’t know, perhaps, that their dogs’ worms pass through the pasture and into the livestock … and the meat can be condemned and it’s a health issue, but it’s in the whole vein of where we are with this coronavirus and viruses – people’s basic lack of understanding their health picture,” Wytinck said.

Wytinck, who was an operating room nurse at Nanaimo Regional General Hospital for more than 30 years, grew up in an area of England where her family raised sheep and she and her husband have continued to raise sheep on their property in Nanaimo since the late 1970s.

Nanaimo veterinarian Ken Langelier said he would defer commenting on large animal parasite issues to others with that sort of expertise.

“The only thing I could say on the situation is there should be proper disposal of all feces because of parasites, bacteria and everything else,” Langelier said. “It’s not a good thing for a neighbour to do.”

TODAY’S MOST-READ: B.C. is seeing the highest rate of COVID-19 recovery in Canada, and there’s a few reasons why



photos@nanaimobulletin.com
Like us on
Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Farming

Just Posted

Nanaimo Airport. (News Bulletin file photo)
Nanaimo Airport coping with low passenger counts, uncertain recovery

Airport CEO Dave Devana says it will take years to return to pre-pandemic passenger levels

Sophia Seward-Good and Aunalee Boyd-Good of Nanaimo’s Ay Lelum – The Good House of Design are showcasing their latest collection Yuxwule’ Sul’sul’tun – Eagle Spindle Whorl at Indigenous Fashion Week Toronto. (Photo courtesy Helena Lines)
Nanaimo’s Ay Lelum makes Indigenous Fashion Week Toronto debut

Clothing design company showing new collection, Yuxwule’ Sul’sul’tun – Eagle Spindle Whorl

Gracie couldn’t stop nursing from her previous owner’s goats which was problematic given the goats were trying to be dried out to breed. Gracie now lives at A Home for Hooves. (Sarah Simpson/Citizen)
Cowichan animal sanctuary gets international accreditation

A Home for Hooves farm sanctuary accredited by the Global Federation of Animal Sanctuaries

Nurse Doreen Littlejohn takes a longterm approach in her outreach work with homelessness in Parksville Qualicum Beach, but says more needs to be done now. (Auren Ruvinsky photo)
‘Women face a much different experience on the street’

Vancouver Island nurse says community needs to be part of solution to homelessness

The Sepura is a garbage disposal system that separates solids from liquids and allows for stink and hassle-free composting. (Courtesy of Anvy Technologies)
Goodbye garburator, this Victoria company has a clean composting solution

Sepura has made Time Magazine’s ‘100 Best Inventions of 2020’ for its hassle-free functioning

(Dave Landine/Facebook)
VIDEO: Dashcam captures head-on crash between snowplow and truck on northern B.C. highway

Driver posted to social media that he walked away largely unscathed

A B.C. Ambulance Service paramedic wearing a face mask to curb the spread of COVID-19 moves a stretcher outside an ambulance at Royal Columbia Hospital, in New Westminster, B.C., on Sunday, November 29, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Top doctor urges Canadians to limit gatherings as ‘deeply concerning’ outbreaks continue

Canada’s active cases currently stand at 63,835, compared to 53,907 a week prior

A Canadian Pacific freight train travels around Morant’s Curve near Lake Louise, Alta., on Monday, Dec. 1, 2014. A study looking at 646 wildlife deaths along the railway tracks in Banff and Yoho national parks in Alberta and British Columbia has found that train speed is one of the biggest factors. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Frank Gunn
Study finds train speed a top factor in wildlife deaths in Banff, Yoho national parks

Research concludes effective mitigation could address train speed and ability of wildlife to see trains

A airport worker is pictured at Vancouver International Airport in Richmond, B.C. Wednesday, March 18, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Canada extends COVID restrictions for non-U.S. travellers until Jan. 21 amid second wave

This ban is separate from the one restricting non-essential U.S. travel

A man walks by a COVID-19 test pod at the Vancouver airport in this undated handout photo. A study has launched to investigate the safest and most efficient way to rapidly test for COVID-19 in people taking off from the Vancouver airport. The airport authority says the study that got underway Friday at WestJet’s domestic check-in area is the first of its kind in Canada. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO, Vancouver Airport Authority *MANDATORY CREDIT*
COVID-19 rapid test study launches at Vancouver airport for departing passengers

Airport authority says that a positive rapid test result does not constitute a medical diagnosis for COVID-19

The property at 113 and 161 Island Highway is currently being dismantled as the developer attempts to salvage ‘usable’ lumber for their development application to the City of Parksville. (Mandy Moraes photo)
Development application delayed for high-profile Parksville property

Council refers application to staff for further improvements

Work is underway to bring a Nordic-themed Christmas display to Uptown Shopping Centre. (Black Press Media file photo)
Outdoor skating rink, road mural among holiday festivities at Saanich mall

Santa dons a clear mask for photos at Uptown this winter

Peninsula Panthers' owner and general manager Pete Zubersky questions the decision-making process leading to the suspension of play in the Vancouver Island Junior Hockey League (VIJHL). (Black Press Media File)
Peninsula Panthers’ owner questions process behind suspension of Junior B hockey action

Pete Zubersky does not understand actions of provincial body administering amateur sports

Most Read