Dog owners often face the issue of allocating some space for a dog friendly backyard.
While, of course, the entire house belongs to a beloved pet, many pet owners often design a small space that gives their dog a place of their own without worrying about causing any damage to the property.
Are Dogs Happier with a Backyard?
When you think of having a dog, it often comes with the image of a large backyard for the dog to run around and sniff. But do you need to have a backyard to provide the best care for your dog? According to sources, pets can be just as happy living in an apartment with no backyard as a pet who lives where there is a large backyard. The most important thing is providing a loving home for them, and keeping them entertained whether that is through your presence or dog walks.
A dog friendly backyard doesn’t have to be super expensive. Here are some dog friendly backyard ideas on a budget.
1. Dog-Safe Plants
When you have a dog, you have to mindful which plants you have in your backyard. Some plants can be poisonous, or prone to being destroyed. Instead, invest in some dog friendly backyard plants. Some examples of dog friendly plants are cilantro, sage, sunflowers, snapdragons, marigolds, or roses.
However, make sure that you check which plants are toxic to dogs. These may include irises, mistletoe, hemlock, peonies, or hydrangeas.
2. Grass Options
Dogs have a natural tendency to dig. They are going to pee and run around the backyard. No matter what type of grass you have, it cannot escape being damaged by your dog.
There are some blends of grass like the Kentucky Bluegrass that are more durable than others and stay tough for a longer time. These blends are also more affordable than others. Otherwise, clover is an excellent idea as it’s safe for dogs and requires less fertilizer and water.
Check Out: 25 Best Dog Breeds for Kids and Your Family
3. Non-Grass Options
When it comes to non-grass options for dogs, though, you can opt for mulch or stones. For example, cedar mulch is a natural bug repellent, and it even smells nice. However, avoid using cocoa mulch as this can be bad for dogs.
For stones, you can use gravel or other smooth stones, or even create brick pathways in your backyard to break up some of the grass. Another viable option is using both stones and grass in a patchwork, so that the grass has a better chance of not getting trampled so much.
Every dog loves to run around while sniffing everywhere. However, they still need to be kept inside fencing to keep them safe. Standard fencing is essential for the safety of your dog and to ensure it stays on the premises.
You can consider any type of fencing material that matches the landscape of your backyard. But while choosing a fence, make sure to factor in the safety of your dog. It should be safe enough to ensure that your dog’s head won’t get stuck between the boards.
Plus, if your fencing blocks the view for your dog, consider building in a dog fence window or a viewing bubble to allow them to observe what’s happening outside.
5. Marking Their Territory
Dogs love to mark their territory when they go to the backyard. They like to have a special place to do their business, and you will find that they want to keep going back to the same spot.
If you don’t have any preference, you can let your dog pick a random spot. Otherwise, you can set up a place and encourage your dog to use it.
Some examples would include setting up a fake fire hydrant, large stones, or anything your dog fancies in that chosen spot.
6. Let Them Dig
Dogs love digging, and no amount of persuasion can stop them from digging around the backyard. So instead of shouting at your dog every time it digs up the lawn, have a special place for them where they can dig to their heart’s content and bury their bones and toys.
Getting a sandbox is a great idea. Fill up the sandbox with mulch or sand that is easy to dig up for your dog and easy to refill.
7. Shaded Areas
Your dog might love lazing around under the sun, but there should be the proper amount of shaded areas to let them sleep and cool off. Or you can invest in a dog house.
There are many types of dog houses available today, and you can get one that is cozy and comfortable for your dog while meeting your budget. If nothing else, having some tall trees under which your dog can rest in the shade will also work.
8. Drinking Spot
It is essential to have a place to keep drinking water for your dog in the yard, especially in the hot summer months. If your dog likes to spend a lot of time outside, consider keeping a bowl of fresh cold water in a bowl. If you want to invest long-term, you can install a pet water fountain or water stream in the backyard.
9. Enrichment Toys
Having the ability to run and be outside is good for a dog, but often times they can get bored when their owners are not home. A simple solution is to invest in some enrichment toys they can play with by themselves. Whether this be a course you set up or just some balls and bones, your dog will be happy with something of their own.
10. Designated Dog Run
A lot of dogs have seemingly boundless energy, or like to run back and forth all day. This wrecks havoc on your grass, but if you set up a designated dog run, then your dog will only be destroying that part of the lawn. Dog-run fences are usually shorter than a normal fence as well, so your backyard will not look disheveled or have a higher fence sticking out in the middle of the yard.
Your dog will always love you unconditionally, which means you need to take care of them too. By implementing even a couple of these landscaping ideas into your backyard, you are not only helping your dog but yourself too.