Is your garden suffering from a dog’s urine? If you are fed up with the urine spots that your dog leaves behind now, and then that kills your grass, this article is for you!
Below mentioned is a list of some of the most effective solutions that will keep your lawn protected from dog urine at all times. Check it out.
How Does Your Dog’s Urine Kill Grass?
For starters, let’s understand how and why the grass dies when your dog pees. You must have noticed how discolored, or weak the grass gets whenever your dog pees on it.
In some cases, the grass might even get burned or get cleared. The main reason behind this occurrence is the presence of high nitrogen levels in your dog’s piss.
Other than this, several other salts weaken the nature of the grass and thus kill it. You must have noticed female dogs getting more blamed for this problem than the male ones.
However, both the genders excrete the same liquid, with the same amounts of nitrogen and salts. As they urinate on the grass, it tends to get collected in the form of a puddle.
This increases the amount of nitrogen over a specific area of the grass and thus burns it. The same thing happens if you use way too much fertilizer. It will burn the vegetation along with the grass.
It should be taken into notice that the amount of burn that takes place depends on how your dog urinates. Yes! The position that it forms while urinating can cause more or less damage to your lawn.
Female dogs, old dogs, puppies, and even wounded dogs tend to squat when they want to pee. Because of this, a lot of urine gets collected in one single area and causes great damage.
Male dogs, on the other hand, lift their leg while urinating. This spreads the liquid to a wider area and causes less damage.
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Types of Spots
If you have noticed carefully, your grass tends to react differently in a few situations. It may show green spots or even brown spots. Why does this happen?
Reasons for Green Spots
Green spots are usually seen in the grass, where there is a low concentration of nitrogen due to a lack of fertilizer. When you have not provided a required amount of nitrogen to the grass, it reacts differently to the dog urine.
So, when your dog urinates on this type of grass, it tends to turn bright green. As your dog’s urine contains a high concentration of nitrogen, it provides the grass the rest of the requirement.
You can always check your grass or soil’s level of nitrogen by getting its pH level tested.
Reason for Brown Spots
Brown spots are the results of the most severe reactions between the dog’s urine and the grass. The grass, in this case, tends to die quickly or stays in the process of dying.
If your lawn is very dry and is in any way quite weak, it will be very vulnerable to dog urine damage. If you have kept your lawn well-watered or satisfied with fertilizers, the results of this reaction wouldn’t be this severe.
In such cases, where the grass is already dead, you still have a chance to grow a good lush garden again. All you have to do is remove the dead plants and grass and wash the area thoroughly.
A proper wash will prevent any damage to the new grass. As the grass takes time to grow fully, you can mow it twice or thrice to make it quicker.
Natural Tips to Prevent Dog Urine From Burning Grass
Once you are sure you know almost all the important information about this reaction, you can now start taking precautions to protect your lawn.
Use Fewer Fertilizers
A very effective way to prevent your lawn from dying, in this case, is to use fertilizers as little as possible. By doing this, you will keep the nitrogen intake of the soil and the grass low.
As your dog will urinate on the grass, the reaction that will take place will not be so severe as to burn it. The reaction that occurred would form green spots that would indicate the grass getting needful nitrogen intake from the urine itself.
Depending on the pH level of the grass, you would be able to guess how much damage will happen. Make sure to provide a very controlled amount of fertilizer in case you have to.
This is because even a small amount of surplus nitrogen would be enough to burn a huge portion of the grass.
Wash Affected Area With Water
If you are not sure if the dog urine would be harmful to your lawn, you can stay on the safe side by using water in the affected area. Always keep a bucket full of water ready before your dog reaches the lawn to relieve itself.
By washing the urine off the grass, you would be able to prevent any damage to it before it burns away. As you wash the urine, you clear away all the damaging salts that would react with the grass and burn it.
Moreover, if you keep watering the grass now and then, the chances of it getting burned that easily will decrease significantly.
This reduces the effect of nitrogen on the grass, and the already present moisture in the grass stops it from getting burned.
Keep Your Dog Hydrated
Another great way to keep your grass safe from excess nitrogen is to keep your dog properly hydrated. As the water intake in your dog will increase, the concentration of nitrogen in its urine would reduce.
A high concentration of nitrogen in your dog’s urine may also indicate an underlying health issue in your dog. It is highly recommended to get them checked regularly in such cases.
According to several studies, an adult dog is supposed to drink at least 1-2 ml per kg of its body weight. This concentration should be taken every hour.
Taking care of their hydration needs is very important not just to prevent grass burn but also to reduce any chances of illness. Dogs are usually very active but tend to get tired easily.
This calls for a regular check on their water intake to keep them healthy for a longer time. To make your dog’s urine have a balanced pH, add some tomato juice or apple cider.
This will act as a neutralizing agent and keep the urine safe for the grass.
Related: Why Do Dogs Pee on Fire Hydrants?
Train Them to Relieve in a Specific Spot Only
If you know how to train your dog properly and they listen to you, try keeping them in the same spot for urinating every time. Due to this, even if the urine burns away the grass, it will damage only on a spot of the lawn.
If you assign that spot to your dog only, you will have the rest of the lawn to maintain and beautify. It may be difficult to explain your dog and make them stick to just one spot for urination.
You can also use dog whisperers if they don’t listen to you. There are several other ways to bring them to one specific spot every time.
You could either plant their favorite toy there or leave a certain smell that attracts them every time. And once they get in the habit of urinating in that one particular spot, they will always run to that spot only, even without you directing them.
For Burn-Resistant Grass
Apart from making some changes in your dog’s diet, you can even make some changes with the grass. Go for a grass type that is more resistant to burns.
You can find several species that are provided at any garden store or nursery. These species are much stronger and don’t even get uprooted that easily.
They don’t require much of your attention and maintenance. All you have to do is get them planted in your garden and take the necessary steps for the initial days.
And once they have formed strong roots in your garden, you will not have to worry about a thing. Moreover, with this grass on your lawn, even if your dog urinates on it, the damage would be less severe.
Another type of species that would work great as a preventive for urine burn is to use a grass that resists urine. This grass is used to reflect the urine water off it and can be cleaned very easily.
This way, no severe damage is done to the grass even if your dog urinates with a high concentration of nitrogen in it.
Promote a Balanced Diet for Your Pooch
As dog parents, we always tend to provide a high-protein diet for our dogs. This helps build muscles and keep them strong. However, a protein-rich diet has some downsides.
For starters, it adds a high amount of nitrogen to your dog’s urine. Vets say, if you want to provide your dog a balanced diet but keep nitrogen levels low, you can try giving them some human foods.
A very important add-on to your dog food, in this case, would be a lot of fruits and vegetables. The dog food you buy is usually processed and doesn’t contain the goodness of veggies in raw forms.
Due to this, proper growth and nourishment cannot be provided to your dog. Also, several studies suggest that if you provide your dog vegetables at least three times in one week, they will stay safe from several cancers.
These vegetables, when added, will also make the urine more dilute and safe for your lawn. However, make sure not to provide any vegetables that you might not be sure of.
Refer to the list provided below to get an idea of veggies good for your doggie.
- Green beans
- Sweet potato
There are chances of your dog refusing to consume them. In this situation, try cooking them a little and add some dog-friendly seasonings to make the food more attractive to them.
These vegetables will work great for your dog’s entire system. Your dog will stay more active, happy, and healthy.
Apart from vegetables, you can also give your dog some fruits to help with the diet and keep the nitrogen concentration low. Some of the most beneficial fruits are mentioned below.
If you are thinking of feeding your dog fruits such as grapes or even raisins, make sure to consult the vet first. As these fruits could be poisoning for some breeds, a consultation is a must.
Take Care of Your Lawn
To protect your lawn from any sort of damage, you need to ensure safe and healthy maintenance for it. If you don’t take care of your lawn, it will start getting weak, and burning it with some dog urine would be easy.
Therefore, try to practice regular weeding of your field so that new and strong grass could grow. Also, make sure not to water the lawn more than required.
As excess water can be very damaging for your flora, you will make the grass weaker. Moreover, using natural foods for the plant will lower the chances of any unwanted chemical reactions.
By following these methods, your grass will grow strong and healthy, thus making it difficult to burn.
Related: Why Do Dogs Kill Birds?
To Wrap Up
Maintaining a beautiful garden while raising a healthy dog can be difficult at times. The situation gets even worse when your dog starts to burn away your beloved lawn during its relieving sessions.
However, bid adieu to your miseries as you now have the perfect solutions for this situation. The above-mentioned list is well equipped with all the necessary information you might need while preventing your garden from burning away.
Go through each solution and additional information carefully to figure which method will suit you best. Moreover, these methods are natural and will not harm your dog. I hope it helps!