Blog Posts, Landscaping, Tips & Tricks

Creating a Pet-Friendly Garden

So, you have some four-legged friends but you have a garden that you’re fond of and you’d like to keep it that way? You can’t always train your pets to keep clear of your garden, but you can create a space that’s ‘pet-friendly’ so you can all live in harmony.

Know Which Plants Are Toxic

First things first: check out the ASPCA’s list of toxic and non-toxic plants to ensure that you don’t plant something that can poison your pet:  http://www.aspca.org/pet-care/animal-poison-control/toxic-and-non-toxic-plants. For example, never plant lilies if you have cats; if ingested, they can cause kidney failure.

Other more common plants toxic to pets are tulips, azaleas, holly, sago palms, chrysanthemum, oleander, poinsettia, English ivy, and rhododendrons. Consider putting healthy plants like wheatgrass that animals can eat, or herbs like artemisia and tansy, which can cut down on fleas. Use driftwood as a border to persuade dogs to stay away from your planted sections.

Best Hardscape for Pets

If you don’t want Fido or Fluffy to step on rough terrain, use a gentle hardscape like smooth flagstone and small cedar chips for mulch; they also won’t cling to silky coats. If you have the room, make a long, winding path that dogs can wander about in and get their exercise. Asphalt is hot and hard on paws. Synthetic lawns hold heat as well, and gravel can get stuck between large paw pads – and small dogs may choke on it. Decomposed granite is best – it stays cool and is not a chewing/choking hazard.

Bathroom Business and Napping

Give your dog a place to do its business by putting a piece of driftwood in a spot where they can mark their territory. (You may want to keep it out of sight from the rest of the garden though) Remember to ‘scoop the poop,’ as bacteria will collect in soil and damp leaves and can become toxic to pets.

Lastly, if your pet is going to make themselves comfortable and settle in for a slumber, make sure there are no spiny, thorny, or prickly plants in the garden bed. If you don’t have shade from a tree they can sleep under, put a beach umbrella up to ensure there’s a shady spot. And always remember to store your garden supplies away from pets.

If you follow these guidelines, you’ll have your pets either barking up the right tree or purring with satisfaction.

Want more tips about gardening and landscaping? Contact Borsello Landscaping today.

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