Can a lush lawn and dog co-exist?

  • By Angie Hicks
  • Wednesday, April 9, 2014 6:31pm
  • Life

If you want a dog and a lush lawn, you’re not out of luck.

Dog urine can damage grass, but highly rated experts in lawn care, landscaping and dog training tell our team that there are several ways your pet and your property can coexist:

Change your habits: The cheapest and easiest way to reduce doggie damage is to hose down and dilute urine right after the dog relieves itself. Then, commit to re-seeding damaged areas of grass as needed.

Change your yard: A top dog trainer says his grass is better able to withstand the effects of multiple dogs when he maintains a 4-inch height and applies organic fertilizer.

Another option, if your dog uses a specific area of the yard, is to cover the grass with pea gravel or artificial turf.

Artificial grass costs about $1.50 to $5 a square foot. Pick a higher density option with a nonporous backing. Choose polypropylene or polyethylene over nylon because poly products won’t absorb moisture and will drain better. Using crushed granite as a base material under the turf will also help with drainage. For infill, use silica sand or another product that won’t absorb odor.

Change your dog: Many dogs can be trained to urinate and defecate in a designated spot. It may take four to six weeks of effort. Flag off a sizeable portion of lawn to create a large target zone to start. Leash your pet and take it to that area every time it has to go. Always clean up after the dog. Over time, as the pet responds, gradually shrink the flagged-off area to your preferred size. Eventually, you won’t need the flags; the dog will know the boundaries.

Get the scoop before hiring: If solid waste in the yard is your concern, consider outsourcing cleanup duty. Besides garnering positive online recommendations, a reliable “pooper scooper” business should be able to provide you with a cost estimate, often based on the size of your yard, the size of your dog(s) and frequency of service.

Angie Hicks is the founder of Angie’s List, a resource for consumer reviews on home repair and health care.

©2014, www.angieslist.com

More in Life

‘Last Jedi’ is the best ‘Star Wars’ movie since the first one

This instant-classic popcorn movie makes clever references to the past while embracing the new.

Jesse Sykes brings her evolving sounds to Cafe Zippy in Everett

She and Phil Wandscher make a return trip to a club that she values for its intimacy.

Red wine usually costs more, but you can still find bargains

Here are five good-quality reds that won’t drain your grocery budget.

Beer of the Week: Skull Splitter and Blood of My Enemies

Aesir Meadery of Everett and Whiskey Ridge Brewing of Arlington collaborated to make two braggots.

Beer, wine, spirits: Snohomish County booze calendar

Ugly Sweater Party and Canned Food Drive at Whitewall: Marysville’s Whitewall Brewing… Continue reading

Student winners to perform concertos with Mukilteo orchestra

This annual show is a partnership with the Snohomish County Music Teachers Association.

‘Ferdinand’ a modern take on the beloved children’s story

The lovable bull is back in an enjoyable but spotty animated film from the makers of “Ice Age.”

Dustin Hoffman accused of new incidents of sexual misconduct

A classmate of Hoffman’s daughter says the actor exposed himself in 1980 when she was 16.

Art mimicks reality in engrosing ‘On the Beach at Night Alone’

The Korean film tells the story of an actress recovering from an affair with a married director.

Most Read