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She saw a problem and solved it. Now her invention is in all Arizona Costco stores

"Necessity was the mother of invention," the entrepreneur said.

ARIZONA, USA — A tool originally used to pick up yard leaves has transformed into an environmentally-friendly pooper scooper and is now available to buy at stores throughout the Valley.

The motto of the invention, "Big dog or small, the YardPup holds it all," was brought to life by inventor Melanie Romero. The product is called the YardPup - Ultimate Poop Scoop and it uses recycled plastic bags to effectively clean up dog feces in an eco-friendly way, no matter the size.

“I invented another product called the Snap Bagger in about 2009," Romero said. "This is a scaled-down version of that tool. The snap bagger was for bagging leaves."

The 50-year-old inventor from Colorado modified the product using bungee cord technology which allows any plastic bag to attach to the triangular frame.

The ability to use any plastic bag with the device is the uniquely green feature of the YardPup. Americans use around 100 billion plastic bags each year, according to the Center for Biological Diversity. The average American uses about 365 plastic bags yearly.

Along with saving the environment, Romero also wanted to save herself and fellow pet owners from back pain while still effectively conquering dog duty, or "dog doody."

“I wanted to keep my yard clean and tidy, but I didn't want to spend hours doing it and I didn't want to hurt my back and bend over," Romero said. "So really, necessity was the mother of invention."

The Hispanic inventor pitched her product to Costco’s diversity program about two years ago. On August 10th, Romero’s invention officially hit Costco stores across Arizona.

Credit: Melanie Romero

Romero drove a total of 15 hours in an RV with her dog, Kobe, to see her product on one of the largest retailer’s shelves.

“I visited at least a dozen stores just to see my product and to buy one. I took a picture of myself buying my own product in Costco and I was just crying,” Romero said. 

“I just want to get the word out to young girls out there, Hispanic girls especially, that you can do it. Anyone can do it. If I can do it, anyone can do it.”

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