There's a pile of dog shit on the sidewalk.
Since "dog shit" is vulgar usage, what phrase should I use to rewrite the above sentence?
Last edited by sitifan; 27-Sep-2010 at 10:45.
I'm not a teacher, so please consider any advice I give in that context.
So which one is the most common? If it ever depends on some circumstances, let me know how it would go.
This is one example where there is no obvious phrase in a neutral register. You are forced to be either quite formal or quite informal, or to use a euphemism. Other examples of this in English are names for genitals and sexual intercourse.
In these types of situations, usage varies a lot, from region to region and person to person, perhaps because the language is not used so freely.
I think "dog poo", "dog crap" and "dog poop" would be fairly common informal but not particuarly rude phrases. As jerry081958 said, if I wanted to say this in a more polite way, I would rephrase it to avoid mentioning the dog crap altogether.
In writing, I would expect to see something like "dog feces" or "dog excrement".
The tool for removing this is called a poop scoop or pooper scooper, so poop might be a reasonable choice for a fairly neutral term, though, as Munch says, terms vary considerably.