Sunday, July 27, 2008

The Perfect Backyard Dog

Those of you that have decided to grow a garden this summer or are planning to add some landscaping to your yard and own a dog will know that it can be quite interesting trying to keep your dog from having a blast in the garden or in the bushes.

As a responsible dog owner, you will want to take precautions, not only to prevent destruction of the garden, but for the safety of your loyal and trusting companion. You need to take steps to protect your dog from any toxic fertilizers or plants.

Here are some tips to help you create a backyard fit for a dog.
Leave spaces between shrubs so dogs can run between them to reduce damage.

Install a fence. Even the best behaved dogs will have trouble holding back the desire to chase that squirrel!

Check your yard for potentially toxic plants, such as a nightshade, which is a poisonous weed. Remove these immediately. They pose not only a danger to your pet, but to your children.
Know that even though some parts of a plant are safe for humans, it could be toxic for your dog, such as tomatoes.

Do not use rocks or mulch that smells good. Dogs can choke or will want to eat the mulch.
Use organic products instead of toxic pesticides to manage bugs.

Train your dog to stay away from the garden.

Avoid planting poisonous plants where you know your dog will be. Find a place where the dog is not able to get to for these plants.

Avoid mulch made from cocoa bean hulls because dogs will eat it because it has a strong chocolate fragrance. It can also contain caffeine and theobromine stimulants that will make a dog sick or could be fatal if eaten in huge quantities. This is according to the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals.

You can actually help reduce the lawn from being destroyed by dog urine by encouraging your dog to drink plenty of fresh water. This will help to dilute the urine so it is not so strong.
Train your dog and praise him with lot of treats and love.

Show him the boundaries. You should grab that pet stroller and pet jacket and leave your house the same way when going for a walk outside of the yard. Either get into the car or always leave the yard by the drive way. This will help to confuse your dog and will help in training the boundaries of the yard and areas where he is not allowed.

Play, play, play. If you take the time to play with your dog out in the yard, this will give you lots of chances to train him to stay away from specific areas, but will also give him the sense of belonging in the areas you allow him to be in. After a long hard day of play, he will be ready to sleep in his beloved pet bed.

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