If you have a dog, you know that experiencing some degree of damage to your lawn isn’t really a surprise. After all, dogs use the yard for running, rolling, jumping, and playing catch (not to mention a place to do their business), which can be really hard on your grass. Often, you end up with grassless spots of unattractive dirt and large circles of dead grass throughout your yard. But, it doesn’t have to be that way! It’s possible to have both a loving furry friend and a lush green yard.
Dogs can wreak havoc on your yard in a few ways:
- Urine and feces – Lawn damage caused by urine is the most common problem for dog owners. While female dogs can cause more of a problem because they tend to consistently go in one place, male dogs can cause their share of damage, too. Urine damage appears as round areas of dead grass sometimes surrounded by a ring of taller green grass. This spot is actually caused by an overload of nutrients (specifically nitrogen) from the urine. These nutrients kill the grass in the center while providing just enough to the outer ring to act as fertilizer. Feces cause the same problems but to a lesser extent because the nutrients are absorbed at a much slower rate.
- Wear and tear – If your back yard is the primary area where your dog plays and runs around, chances are you have some turf damage. Dogs can simply wear down a lawn really quickly. They dig, run, jump, and play, all of which can rip up your lawn leaving large grassless, muddy patches.
Tips for Lawn Care
One of the best things you can do to minimize the look of lawn damage is to plant your yard with a strong variety of grass – the heartier, the better. That said, this doesn’t really solve your problem if you already have a yard full of damage!
No matter what kind of grass you have in your yard, you can take some steps to minimize the damage created by your dog. Here are some basic guidelines to follow that will make dogs and lawn care a little easier:
- Fertilize your yard about four times a year. Doing this will make your grass thicker and stronger and able to stand up to a little more abuse. Make sure to carefully follow the directions because you’ll need to keep your dog off the lawn for a while after application.
- The only way to guarantee zero lawn damage is to completely keep your dog out of the yard, which is unlikely in most cases. That said, you can limit the access your dog has by fencing off a part of your yard for your dog to use. Keep in mind that the fenced off area will get pretty heavily damaged and will need a lot of upkeep.
- If you want to go a step beyond fencing off an area of your yard, you can make an area covered in mulch or gravel for your dog to use as a toileting area. This will help get rid of burn spots throughout your lawn.
- You can try to train your dog to use the same area for the bathroom every time; this way, you’ll only have a small area to worry about maintaining. If you water the spots where your dog urinates, this will help disperse and dilute the urine, which will help cause less damage.
- Changing your dog’s diet might help. Urine that is too high in nitrogen can be caused by eating an abundance of protein. Some dogs are sensitive to food changes, so be sure to check with your vet before making any alterations. Also, make sure your dog is well hydrated. The more water your dog drinks, the more diluted its urine will be.
- Make frequent trips to the dog park and take regularly scheduled walks. This increased activity will give your dog a chance to run and play without tearing up your yard. Plus, any time your dog goes to the bathroom somewhere other than your yard, your lawn gets a bit of a break.
Lawn Care in Little Rock
Hiring a lawn care service can save you a lot of time. You’ll know your lawn is getting expert, professional care, and you won’t have to worry about things like damage from your dog. We’ll take care of everything. Let the specialists at Little Rock Lawns maintain your home’s beautiful curb appeal.
With 17 years of experience, Little Rock Lawns is locally owned and operated. If you’re looking for lawn services in Little Rock, look no further than Little Rock Lawns. Visit our website or call (501 )257-0323 today to schedule your free professional lawn analysis.