LINDEN, Mich. — Necessity might be the mother of invention, but nastiness also played a big role in Curt Fournier's creation.
Fournier, 34, of Linden, about 45 miles northwest of Detroit, developed the Powerloo and formed GreenDog LLC with fiancee Victoria Januszewski. It's an outdoor, handsfree flushable toilet for dog waste.
The Powerloo sits just below ground level and taps into sewer lines. It's designed to be an environmentally safe and convenient way to dispose of dog poop.
Fournier, who said he spent two years on research, said it's preferable to taking up space in a landfill or remaining on the ground. Federal environmental and disease experts say dog waste can infect humans or other animals, and contaminate water sources.
Such experts recommend flushing pet waste down a toilet but "carrying dog poop into your house can be unsafe, and not to mention gross," Januszewski told the Detroit Free Press for a story published Saturday.
"Vicki and I were getting tired of cleaning up the mess left by our two dogs and thought that being able to flush it down a toilet in the backyard would make things easier," Fournier said.
GreenDog plans to officially launch the Powerloo next month and expects to make 500 of them this year. It sells for about $1,000, and comes with an optional heating unit to prevent freezing.