The birds are chirping. The trees are budding. And we couldn’t be more excited for spring, because it means we can get outside. If you love landscaping or you take pride in growing fruits and veggies you can eat each year, you know how tough it is to wait for warmer weather. And if you want to spend some quality time outdoors with your dog, we’ve put together a list of gardening tips to help Fido stay safe in your garden or yard.
1: Choose Plants Safe For Dogs
This one might seem obvious, but it’s the most important! Plenty of plants appear harmless but are actually toxic to your pet. It’s essential to get educated about which blooms, shrubbery, and produce your pet needs to stay away from. Take some time to research the plants you’d like to add to your garden before you get planting.
And, if you’ve already got potentially harmful plants in your yard, ditch them! Sure they’re beautiful, but they’re not worth risking your pet’s safety. And there are plenty of other plants safe for dogs that you can choose instead.
Here are some plants you should definitely stay away from:
- Baby’s Breath
If you suspect your pet’s consumed part of a plant that’s potentially poisonous, get in touch with your Vet asap. And, consider contacting the dog poison hotline.
2: Keep A Close Eye On Your Pup When You’re Outside
When you’re spending time in the garden or backyard with your pet, don’t leave him unattended. There’s no telling what mischief he’ll get up to if left to his own devices. He may escape the yard. He may dig up something harmful. He may get hurt. Instead, if you’re planning to leave the yard, put your pup back inside. He’ll be safe, and you’ll have peace of mind while you’re away.
3: Pick Up After Yourself, And Your Dog
This is one of our favorite gardening tips because it’s so simple! Cleaning up goes a long way to help you and your pet enjoy time outside. It’ll ensure your lawn’s free from dog poop. No one likes cleaning that off their shoes! And, it’ll allow you to keep your safe to frolic and enjoy his garden time with you.
Keep your garden, and your garage or storage shed, as tidy as your home. Clippings, trimmings, scraps, and discards should immediately get tossed into the trash. And tools? Stash those away ASAP as well. You don’t want your pup, or yourself, to trip over a shovel, or step on a garden rake. Ouch!
4: Keep You Plants Prim And Trim
Similarly, it’s a good idea to keep your plants in good condition. Don’t let them get overgrown. And don’t let your pet play near them if they’re a little out of control! Pups are naturally curious. So if there’s something that smells good under that hedge, your dogs going in to investigate. And overgrown shrubbery can cause harm. Scrapes, scratches, and gashes are all too common thanks to thorny plants. And while you can’t protect your pup from them completely, keeping them tidy helps prevent him from getting caught in overgrown brush.
5: Materials Matter When You’re Landscaping
Wood chips, decorative gravel, or other materials are often used to give your garden that little something extra. But, be sure to select materials that are safe for your pet! If Fido just loves fetching branches, there’s a good chance he’ll be interested in chomping on those wood chips. And, if your pet’s got sensitive paws, walking on a gravel garden path is likely not something he’ll enjoy. Steer clear of aromatic mulch, especially cocoa bean mulch. Not only does it smell good enough to entice your dog to take a bite, but it’s also full of compounds that are toxic to dogs. Best to avoid that material altogether. But, before you commit to any material, add-on, or decorative element, make sure it’s suitable for your pet.
6: Go For Natural Pest Control And Skip The Yard Treatments
A pristine green lawn and fruitful garden are on practically everyone’s bucket list. But oftentimes, people use some pretty scary products to get their yard in order and their garden to grow plenty of plants.
Not only are chemical-laden herbicides, fertilizers, and weed killers toxic and potentially lethal for your pet, they’re often bad for the environment as well. If you have a dog, absolutely do not use chemical treatments to enhance your yard. Instead, look for natural products that’ll keep you, your pet, and the environment safe.
And, if you’re worried about voles, mice, ground squirrels, and other small creatures disrupting your backyard garden, resist the urge to grab the poison. There’s no telling which animal will end up ingesting it, and there are far more humane ways to deal with pests.
7: Grow Plants Your Pet Can Eat, As Well
When you’re planning your garden, consider foods that you love, and that your pet can indulge in as well. There’s nothing more satisfying than chomping down on a salad you grew out in the backyard. Except for sneaking some bites to your pet! Some of our favorite pet-friendly produce includes spinach, blueberries, cabbage, mint, carrots, apples, pumpkin, and more.
8: Make Sure There’s Shade
Whether you and your dog only plan to spend a few minutes outdoors, or you’re planning to spend some serious time in the garden, make sure your dog has access to shade. It gets hot in the sun, but that’s especially true for your dog. The one who’s wearing a thick fur coat. All the time. To make sure he doesn’t get overheated while you’re out in the yard, set up a shade station if your yard is not naturally shady. And get creative! Almost anything can be used to create place for your pup to cool down.
9: Get Grooming When You’re Back Inside
When your dog is spending any time outside in warm weather, ticks and fleas are around. The best way to help your pet stay tick-free is to thoroughly examine him each and every time he comes back inside. Make it fun, and use the tick examination to your advantage. Give him a thorough brushing while you’re at it!
As for flea control, it’s best to discuss your options with your Vet. They’ll help you decide whether you prefer a natural flea repellent, a pharmaceutical, or other option.
Pet Honesty Products To Help You Enjoy Your Pet-safe Garden With Your Dog
Since your pup will be spending so much time with you outdoors, seasonal allergies might be a concern. Help him if he’s allergic to any of the pollen in the air by adding an allergy supplement to his diet. Try Pet Honesty Allergy SkinHealth Chews or Pet Honesty Allergy Support+ Chews. They’re both jam-packed with allergy-supportive ingredients to help your pet recover when he has seasonal allergies.