Tips for a dog-friendly yard this summer


Is your yard dog-friendly?

Summertime is here, by whatever measuring stick you mark it by (Memorial Day is a yardstick for many.) Making sure your yard is dog-friendly is a good plan, and Lucky the TurfMutt from has some tips to consider when evaluating the yard’s suitability for dogs.

1 – Keep the dog’s needs in mind

For example, if a dog is a big fan of water (and many breeds are), then a pool or a water fountain might be a good idea. If they have a lot of energy, then a climbable doghouse/shelter structure would likely be a welcome addition. It doesn’t have to be as elaborate as some of Antonio Ballatore‘s Animal Cribs creations (though those are epic).

2 – Fencing is important

Whatever material a fence is made out of – chain link, wood, something else – it should be sturdy and in good repair. Installing or fixing up the current fence is a great idea to prevent Trixie from escaping and getting lost like what happened to NASCAR driver Joey Logano‘s Frenchie Luigi recently.

3 – Include grass

Grass offers a cool spot for your dog to lie down during the hot daytime, and is easy on the paws for a variety of doggy activities. It’s a good idea to check on what your region’s climate zone is first to be sure you’re picking the right variety for your area.

4 – Mix things up with plants

Not only is a mix of grass, trees, plants, flowers and bushes more pleasing to the eye,  but it also keeps the balance of nature rolling along, helping biodiversity. Sturdier plants are recommended by high-traffic areas, while more fragile and delicate plants would likely do better in raised beds.

5 – Poison is bad

Some plants are toxic, and those should be avoided, obviously. For more on which plants don’t go well with canines, see this list from the ASPCA.

TurfMutt, created by the Outdoor Power Equipment Institute’s Research and Education Foundation, is an educational initiative designed to teach students and instructors how to “save the planet one yard at a time.” It was started in 2009 and has claimed many awards since, inlcuding partnerships with Petfinder and the US Fish & Wildlife Service.

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Whatever your yard looks like, we hope you and your dog have a fantastic summer enjoying it our there.