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How To Deal with a Dirty Diaper while out Shopping

Paul Banas
Author Paul Banas
Submitted 11-01-2007

It is a scenario dreaded by most new dads. You are out, maybe enjoying a nice afternoon’s shopping with your baby and your baby chooses just this time to poop. You’ve been lucky up until now and you’ve either avoided the task entirely or only had to make the change in the baby nursery with all the accoutrements around you.


When the baby goes, many a dad will pause for a minute and wonder whether you couldn’t’ just ignore it for a half an hour, or the time to get home. However, pooping a diaper and wetting a diaper are two very different things. If the baby is crying due to a dirty diaper, that screaming will only get louder and more insistent. You need to take action fast. Here are some tips if you’re never been caught with a diaper emergency outside of the house.



  • First of all, never leave the house for more than five minutes without carrying a spare diaper. Babies have an instinct about pooping at the worst times. If you are out and really can’t either buy diapers or get home quickly, you have no choice but to admit you’re a horrible, lousy excuse for a father and find a mom to ask for a spare. She’ll probably smile patronizingly at you and you’ll have to suck it up to get the goods. Dads also have been known to wipe the baby thoroughly with toilet paper and then wipe again with wetted tissue and stuff the baby back into her clothes minus a diaper. This is a recipe for another wet disaster, but can be used in a pinch. Better a wet baby than a dirty baby.


  • Keep an extra changing pad in the car or your bag. Believe me, you do not want to set your baby out on a dirty restroom floor or risk getting poop all over another surface, like your car upholstery or carpet. Baby poop smells and is hard to clean.


  • Locate a place where you can easily do what is required. Large stores often have changing stations equipped for you to do the job. Otherwise, locate a baby section or store where the staff and other shoppers are not likely to raise eyebrows if you settle yourself in their midst to change your baby’s diaper.


  • If you have a stroller, use it to lay your baby in to change the diaper.


  • You can also use the back seat in your car or the back of a station wagon to lay your baby down while you change the diaper.


  • Carry a zip lock bag to store the dirty diaper before you can discard it.