Creating a yard that is dog-friendly is one of the most important things you can do for your pet. However there are several mistakes that owners commonly make. By avoiding the following pitfalls you can help to increase your chances of ending up with a space that’s perfectly suited for your pet’s needs.

Material Matters

While hard materials such as stone or concrete offer many advantages for humans, they aren’t ideal for canines. Instead your dog’s play and rest area should have a semi-soft surface underfoot. This is ideal for joints and helps to prevent injuries. For this reason many owners use grass or artificial turf in their dog-friendly yards. Pet-safe woodchips are often used as well and when drainage is a concern tiles made from rubber can work too.

Overlooking The Importance Of A Fence

While fencing can be expensive, knowing that your pet is safe is priceless. Even if your pooch is superbly trained and has never wandered out of your yard, you will still want a solid barrier such as a fence. Don’t skimp out. If a fence keeps your dog in just once, it’s already paid for itself. And with one you won’t have to worry about your pet causing damage, getting lost, or hit by a car. A strong fence will also keep other animals and strays out.

Forgetting To Create A Toilet Area

For many dog owners one of the biggest drawbacks of owning a canine is dealing with the waste. And setting up a specific area in their yard for their dog to go to the bathroom is therefore often overlooked. This is a mistake which can quickly lead to waste being spread out all over the yard. By teaching your pooch to go in a designated area that’s both convenient to clean up and out of the way, waste will no longer be a problem.

Most owners of male dogs will also add a pee post in this area which helps to keep them from raising their leg in other spots and therefore causing urine damage. Many posts today are designed to look just like hydrants you’d see in the city. The dog and fire hydrant have a special relationship which makes adding one quite a conversation starter. Just be sure you use your post or dog fire hydrant for yard areas that do not tend to flood.

Underestimating The Power Of Breed

Every dog is different and like people they have unique personalities. However when designing a dog-friendly yard it’s actually quite common for owners to underestimate the influence that breed can have on a dog’s behavior. And they therefore fail to plan accordingly. Each dog breed was developed for a specific purpose and therefore is genetically predisposed to certain behavioral characteristics.

Because of this many dogs, such as retrievers for instance, tend to jump right into pools and ponds. Hunting breeds often chase small animals and follow their scents. And terriers may not think twice about digging up your garden or lawn. Even if a pet has never displayed breed behaviors before it’s very important that you design your yard, and especially fencing, with them in mind in order to prevent potential problems.

Not Giving Your Pet A Space All His Own

While your pet will usually want to be in on the action, you should provide him with a place to get away from it all as well. Sometimes pets just want to be alone and take a snooze. You’ll need to give him an area or shelter where he can keep cool and escape weather extremes as well. Including a spot where your pets can dig, roll around in the dirt, and just be a dog is often a great idea too.

You now know the mistakes to avoid when it comes time to start planning and creating your dog-friendly yard. By keeping these pitfalls in mind you’ll be able to make smarter decisions that benefit the lifestyle and health of your pooch for years to come.

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