Pets can be hard on your yard, wearing dirt paths in your lawn and digging holes. However, there are ways to have a beautiful yard without banning the evening game of fetch. Here are a few tips for having a healthy, green lawn even with furry members of the family romping about.
Pets and Your Yard: 5 Things you Need to Know
Set Your Priorities
Some people prefer to give their dog a great deal of freedom and are fine with a less formal yard. Others want a pristine lawn and are willing to restrict pet traffic to accomplish that. Families have to decide whether they are willing to have a less than perfect yard needing occasional repairs, or whether they are willing to consider using a dog run or other means of controlling pet traffic. There is no correct answer to this question as it just depends on what is most important to you.
Choose Tough Turf
Turf has to handle a lot of stress from both your human family members and your four-legged family members. Choose a type of grass from a place like Sod Atlanta that is not too delicate and can take the wear and tear of daily life in your household. In almost all cases, sod is the best choice for people who have pets. Grass seeds will produce the same lawn as sod eventually but they must be protected for several weeks until the lawn is mature enough to handle traffic. Your chances of keeping a dog or cat off of delicate grass seedlings is almost nil. Spare yourself the frustration and invest in sod, which is hardy and usable from the first day.
Deal with Bare Patches Immediately
A small thin patch in your lawn will quickly become a mud hole taking up a quarter of your yard if your dog has anything to say about it. This is due to erosion and also the continued attention from the pet. It is possible to patch small areas with sod; do this immediately before your pet adopts the area as their favorite digging patch. Your pets are less likely to dig up your grass if it is replaced immediately. This will keep them from forming favorite digging spots.
Protect Your Garden and Flower Patches
Your pets don’t understand that a bed of calla lilies is more delicate than the lawn. Raising beds to a slightly higher level or installing a small fence around them will go a long way to protect your flowers or vegetable garden. These measures may not be enough to restrain your pet, but they create a visual barrier and discourage them from entering those areas. It is easier to train a pet to stay out of certain parts of your yard when those areas are clearly marked off from the allowed spaces to make sure the difference between play areas and off limit areas are clear.
Invest in Fencing
Even if you have a well-behaved pet that stays within their boundaries, you cannot control neighborhood animals. Unfortunately, some strays may come to play (or create disputes) with your pet. If you think one dog can ruin a lawn, wait until you see what several can do. Install a tall fence that will keep your own pets in the yard and other pets out of it. As a side benefit, this will also keep out larger wildlife that can be more destructive than even the worst-behaved pet.
Having a beautiful yard and a loved family pet are not mutually exclusive. You can protect your yard by setting priorities, teaching your pet boundaries, and performing routine maintenance on areas that get a little too much love.