A Mesa, Arizona dog has found his true vocation in the wilderness: he loves to collect plastic bottles for recycling.
By Published on 24 Apr 2019
Chipper, 8, a bitzer, is setting a great example for locals as he attempts to save the planet with owner Katie Pollak.
He’s got some bottle
Pollak adopted Chipper from a rescue shelter in 2011. He soon demonstrated his interest in recycling by collecting plastic bottles as the pair strode across Arizona together.
“He started picking them up immediately, so I encouraged it and rewarded it - and he motivated me to do the same,” Pollak told TODAY. “I really started getting out and picking up more than I was before, so we created kind of a team.”
The animal and vegetable inhabitants of Earth are due to be thrown into disarray, misery, and ultimately extinction in just a few short decades if drastic measures aren’t immediately taken by big businesses and governments. But individuals – including dogs – can also play a small part by tending their environment with love and respect.
“It’s heartbreaking,” continues Pollak, “but we love this area so much, and we really want to do our best to keep it wild.”
Not only does Chipper recycle bottles, his good nature and enthusiasm have proven to be inspiring to the strangers they meet along the way, including on Instagram where the pair boast over 30,000 followers.
“He really has been an inspiration. I'll go to group cleanups in the area, and when people see him, they're like, 'Chipper's here!' So everyone gets to come meet him and see what he's all about.”
Pollak and Chipper, who are often accompanied by Pollak’s other dog, Quinci, and neighbourhood friends, are not just in it to keep the world liveable for their pups and grandpups. Keeping their area clean makes it a nicer place to walk right now when they don’t have time to make it out to the desert.
“It's near impossible to find a quiet, open space in town - but we have, and we do our best to protect it and keep it wild!” writes Pollak on Instagram. It’s yet another example of dogs being wonderful – and bringing out the best in their humans.