Lawns and pets

Dogs and cats love spending time outdoors, and pet owners with yards know pet time outside can take its toll on lawns. Pet urine and feces can adversely affect the look and health of a lush green lawn. Nitrogen is essential to healthy soil, but only at certain levels. When those levels are exceeded, the result can be lawn damage.

According to The Spruce Pets, an advisory site that offers practical tips and training advice to pet owners, this is what happens when pets frequently urinate on grass. Urine is naturally high in nitrogen, so when pets urinate on lawns, the grass might turn yellow or brown due to the excess nitrogen content. Nitrogen also is present in lawn fertilizers, further exacerbating the problem for pet owners who fertilize their lawns.

In addition to urine damage, animals can trample frosted grass, contributing to problems that may not become evident until spring, and get into areas like gardens where they wreak additional havoc.

Pet owners who want to let their animals have free access to the yard but don’t want damaged grass, can use some simple strategies to save the lawn.

Speak with a landscaper about planting new grass.

Certain types of grass, such as Bermuda grass, can withstand pet damage better than others. Local climate will dictate which types of grass are likely to thrive in a given area, so speak with a professional landscaper about the viability of planting new grass.

Consider hardscaping.

Hardscaping might be most effective for pet owners with small properties. Hardscaping does not include grass and can add visual appeal to a property while saving pet owners the headaches of dealing with dog/cat-related lawn damage.

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