From a practical standpoint, there is no reason for you not to become the owner of a pet as well as an enticing, lush yard. However, landscaping with dogs in mind presents some challenges that will definitely require compromises.
Be prepared to balance what the designer in you wants and what owning a pet requires to successfully create a pet-friendly landscape design.
Not a Fully Functional Backyard?
There is nothing worse than having an untrimmed, unsightly lawn, and plenty of backyard furniture and landscape decoration crowding the space. How exactly will you enjoy playing outdoors with your dog if you have this kind of outdoor space?
What Isn’t Family/Pet-Friendly?
- A swimming pool that is difficult for your children and pet to enter and exit
- Using cocoa mulch that has theobromine, which is an ingredient that makes chocolate toxic to dogs
- Using noxious plant and lawn care products that will harm dogs
- Cultivating plants that will make your furry friend sick, such as iris, lily of the valley and foxglove
- Redirecting your dog away from the routes he already travels by planting thorny shrubs
- Using a metal edging that will cut your pet
4 Things to Think About When Designing a Family/Pet-Friendly Space
- Grass Types
Some types of grass hold up better to paw traffic, foot traffic, and other forms of abuse than others. Bermuda grass is one of the toughest of all the warm-season grasses. As for cool-season grasses for DIY landscaping with dogs, the tall fescue grass is the best choice.
Lawn grass and dogs don’t mix well. If you have a small garden design, switch from a grass expanse to hardscape. Masonry and stone are useful for pet owners since they reduce the mess dogs make through urination and digging.
Crushed stone mulch can be used for drought-resistant plants, but it should not be placed directly up against the plants. Building a concrete patio, a brick patio or a flagstone patio is also one of the best pet-friendly landscape ideas you can try.
A fence must be built around the delicate plants in your garden to keep dogs away from them. Fenced-in gardens offer a unique, courtyard feel. To create an English country garden, you can plant perennial flowers like lilac, rose and iris behind a white picket fence.
- Dog Behaviour
Train your dogs to restrict their “toilet space” to a specific area. The designated area must have a surface of gravel or dirt to facilitate easy and fast clean-up.
A change in your dog’s diet is also important to neutralise the harmful elements in its urine before it can harm your lawn and garden.
Efficient and cheap landscaping with dogs in mind will start with the pet owner recognising that a business-as-usual strategy won’t work. Letting your dog roam around your yard will entail making adjustments on what you have on your outdoor space and how you maintain it. Making the necessary changes will lead to a beautiful, pet-friendly yard.
Consider pet-friendly landscape design
If you’re looking for professional garden design and landscaping services in Sydney, we can assist your landscape needs and provide you further guidance, please get in contact with us to book a free on-site consultation or give us a call now 02-9548 6024.