A Maryland town says geese have become such a problem at an area lakefront they're going to set the dogs on them, a decision sparking controversy among locals.

The non-profit Columbia Association, charged with overseeing the waterfront at Columbia's Lake Kittamaqundi, used two border collies to patrol geese, but two years after the dogs died, the geese returned along with their waste problem, The Baltimore Sun reported.

The association is set to spend more than $43,000 a year to rent more dogs to run the geese off, the newspaper said Saturday.

"It's a real problem for the habitat," said Ned Tillman, an environmentalist and chairman of the county's Environmental Sustainability Board. "I know it's causing some of the problems with the algae. We all have to figure out how to put less nutrients into the lakes."

But some people like having the fowl around despite the amount of waste they produce.

"I love seeing them," said Pamela Steinhice, 37, of Elkridge who had brought her daughter Chase, 21 months, to see the geese and ducks. "Today, our entire plan was to see the ducks. We like geese and ducks," she said. "I don't think anyone notices the poop, except pessimists," she said.