Building a Pet-Friendly Yard and Garden

A dog laying in the grass in a backyard smiling at the camera.When it comes to landscaping your yards and garden, it’s important to take your pets into consideration if they like to head outside. This can range from overhauling your outdoor living space to be more pet-friendly to picking the right plants and fertilizers to avoid making them sick. The following are several things to keep in mind when talking to a contractor about landscape construction, or if you’re picking out plants for the next year’s garden.

Create a Safe Space for Your Pets

When it comes to building an outdoor space for you and your family to enjoy, think about your pets as well. Below are some points to think about when it comes to having a safe space for your pets to enjoy:

  • Fences: Avoid accidents for both your pets and the community by having fences that will allow larger dogs the ability to roam free without danger or the need for supervision.
  • Water and Shade: Especially in the hot seasons, having a water feature that pets can cool off in and drink from can make their furry lives much easier. Think about having a patio or plant features that provide shade in the summer.
  • Keep Gardens Off Limits: Avoid your pets digging up and eating your plants (especially ones that are toxic, see below) by having raised flower beds or even a small fence to set boundaries.
  • Create a Digging Place: If you have a dog, they are going to want to dig. To avoid them tearing up your yard and garden, think about installing a sandbox for them to play in.

Use Plants That are Non-Toxic to Pets

Make sure the plants you love are ones that won’t harm your pets. Plants like the Autumn Crocus can cause diarrhea and bleeding in both cats and dogs, while the Cyclamen can cause vomiting and seizures. The ASPCA has a complete list of plants that can be harmful to pets, including filters for both cats, dogs, and even horses. You can find it here: ASPCA Toxic and Non-Toxic Plants List.

Pet-Friendly Fertilizers, Pesticides, and Herbicides

Lastly, if you’re going to employ fertilizers, pesticides, or herbicides on your lawn, garden, or the rest of your landscape, make sure to check the bag (or talk to the contractor) about non-toxic options. Likewise, with landscape materials like mulch, make sure there won’t be any complications: such as cocoa mulch that contains – you guessed it – theobromine, the ingredient that makes cholate poisonous to pets.

If you’re looking to tailor or tweak your landscape to make it more pet-friendly, contact Dolan Landscaping. We provide landscape design and construction, as well as maintenance services from lawn care to full-service packages. Let us know how we can help you, regardless of your commercial or residential needs.