How to Pet-Proof Your Backyard
Being outside is great for your pet's well being. Exercise, fresh air, and room to run and roam can stimulate your pet and keep them healthy. However, many pets are prone to escaping the safety of the backyard, exposing themselves to the dangers of motor vehicles or getting lost. Here are some tips to make sure your pet is safe and happy in your yard.
Build a Fence
The most obvious way for a pet owner to keep a pet secured in the yard is to fence the yard in. This lets the owner dispense with restrictive chains or leads and gives your pet more freedom to move and explore. Just make sure to choose the right style. Some dogs are adept climbers who will make short work of a chain-link fence. Smaller dogs may be narrow enough to slip through wider spacing in an iron bar fence. Guard-type breeds may not do well with high visibility fencing that has them reacting.
Generally, a six-foot-tall wooden privacy fence is ideal, though cost can be a factor. Smaller breeds can get by with less, but athletic and larger dogs, such as huskies, shepherds, and labs, can leap or climb small and chain fencing. Don't forget that if your dog is a digger, you may need to place a barrier that extends under your fence.
Care for Your Grass
It is important for pet owners to maintain the state of the lawn. Letting grass grow tall may hide digging along the fence perimeter or fence damage. It can also encourage pests, such as ticks, to take up residence in your yard. To avoid needing pesticides, keep your grass trimmed regularly and nip any pest infestation quickly before it becomes a problem. An alternative is to use an artificial lawn. Artificial lawns come with many other benefits over traditional grass. They won't get damaged by dog urine, attract pests, or require regular maintenance. Artificial grass doesn't need any water, and some artificial lawns have built-in drainage systems that prevent puddles and mud, keeping your yard and dog cleaner.
Make It a Happy Place
If you have secured and maintained your backyard, the next step to pet happiness is to give them reasons to stay instead of spending time looking for an escape route. Spend as much time as possible outdoors with your pets, and don't leave them unsupervised for long periods. Having a rotation of toys, especially those that can stimulate your pet, will keep them interested and occupied with what is in the yard rather than what is outside. Good interactive toys include tether ropes, interactive-puzzle treat dispensers, and ball launchers. Lastly, don't forget their comfort. Always have a source of fresh water on hand for your pet to drink and make sure they have shelter in case of sudden rain. A shady spot to protect against heat and sun is also an excellent idea.
Animals love to be outdoors, and being outdoors is great for them. However, an ill-equipped and unprepared yard can allow your furry friend to escape. By properly securing the yard, maintaining it, and giving your pet plenty to keep them comfortable and occupied, you can make your backyard a perfect animal oasis.
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