*This is a collaborative post with Digitized Adverts!*
Is your yard dog-safe?
If you own a dog, a backyard is essential to make life easier and more rewarding for both you and your pet. From late-night toilet visits to mid-afternoon fun and games, the backyard is somewhere your dog can be a dog without you having to put on the leash and head out to the park or nature reserve.
But just how safe is your backyard? Have a look through this checklist of key points to find out.
Secure fences are essential
An estimated ten million dogs are lost every year. And in many cases, it is through insecure gates and fences. Walk the perimeter of your property regularly to check for any damage, weakness or tunneling activities. Nothing is more stomach-churning than seeing an empty yard and a hole in the fence, so be proactive!
Also, think about your gates. Ideally, keep them locked, but at the very least, ensure you have clear signs to alert visitors that there is a dog in the garden and to discourage trespassers or soliciting. Websites like mysecuritysign have a good choice of signs in a variety of styles.
What’s growing in your garden?
Seemingly innocuous plants can be lethal to your four-legged friend. The ASPCA has put together this exhaustive list of what to avoid and you might find some of the items surprising.
For example, did you know that apples, tulips, and daisies can be harmful to dogs? Well, you do now!
Be aware of natural predators
We think of dogs as hunters that are close to the top of the food chain and tend to assume that unlike other pets, for example, rabbits, predators are unlikely to be a problem. However, it really depends on where you live and the size of your dog! Birds of prey like eagles and hawks have been known to target small dogs, while bears, coyotes, and mountain lions are a threat to animals of any size.
You can deter potentially aggressive wildlife by refraining from leaving food waste outside and keeping your trash cans secured.
Think about the weather
When the sun is at its hottest, we are quick to keep ourselves and the kids in the shade. Dogs are equally at risk from the effects of hot weather – but they can be as oblivious to those risks as over-enthusiastic children when it comes to playing outside. Make sure your dog has shady places to lie down if he is left outside for long periods, and that there is always plenty of cool, fresh drinking water available. Sometimes, you have to take the same approach as you do with children – in other words, lay down the law and tell Doggie it is time to come inside!
Keep chemicals out of reach
Dogs are naturally curious, and if you have toxic chemicals in the shed, make sure they are secured in a closed cupboard. However, do you really need those chemicals at all? Avoid using them in many areas of the garden your dog can access, as they can cause sickness days, or even weeks, after spraying.