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Owner's Guide: Lawn Care with Dogs

June 09, 2021

Owner's Guide: Lawn Care with Dogs

Spring has sprung, and homeowners everywhere are on the hunt for a pawsitively perfect lawn. But what does that mean for those of us with furry friends to think of?

We know you’re already worried about soaring summer temperatures, and the occasional skunk run-in, so fear not, pet parents. We’ve got you covered with tips and tricks to get a pristinely green lawn that’s also safe for your BFF.

Lawn Care Chemicals: How Toxic Are They to Dogs?

Let’s talk about lawn care with dogs. Studies have shown that some lawn care chemicals can be traced to a rise in cancer occurrences in dogs. This list of health effects of 30 commonly used pesticides is based on studies of humans, but could be a useful guide when searching for products that feel safe for canines.

When in doubt, opt for true organic lawn care methods that focus on nourishing the ecosystem underneath grass. It may take a few seasons, but these natural methods can lead to healthy grass on top that’s safe for your beloved furry friend.

Lawn Fertilizer and Dogs: What You Need to Know

Fertilizers come in two types: granules and water-based products. While many fertilizers contain ingredients that are generally non-toxic, they may also contain insecticides that could result in gastrointestinal symptoms if ingested from the bag, which is why most fertilizers advise homeowners to keep kids and pets away from the fertilized area for 72 hours.

But don’t stress! If you’re following the directions properly, your pets should be safe. Keep animals away during and after application, take extra precautions and wipe down paws and fur in the days following application, and keep alert for any signs of significant poisoning:

  • Drooling
  • Vomiting
  • Severe lethargy/collapse
  • Diarrhea
  • Abnormal breathing

How Can You Tell What Is a Dog Friendly Lawn Fertilizer?

Keeping things natural when it comes to lawn fertilizer is the best case scenario for pets and plants alike. Here’s a quick guide to help you find lawn fertilizers that are safe for dogs:

Pet-Friendly Fertilizer Ingredients  Not-So-Pet-Friendly Ingredients 
  • Manure
  • Seaweed
  • Compost
  • Fish Emulsion
  • Iron
  • Carbamates
  • Compost Organophosphates

Is Weed Killer Safe for Dogs?

Many pets get exposed to weed killers in one of two ways: coming into direct contact with the product after it has been freshly applied, or accidentally ingesting when the product is improperly stored.

The good news? Both of these situations are avoidable! We’re pawsitive. Just be sure to:

  • Follow product directions carefully.
  • Keep pets inside until the product has completely dried.
  • Store products appropriately.

Lastly, avoid weed killers that contain these toxic ingredients:

  • Glyphosate
  • Paraquat
  • Organophosphates

Instead, opt for more natural ingredients like vinegars, clove oil, and lemon to stave off weeds!

How Long to Keep Dog Off Grass After Weed Killer

Better safe than sorry! Many recommendations say that 24-48 hours after application is sufficient. But the most important thing to be sure of, is that the weed killer is fully dry. Follow the guidelines, but be sure to keep pets away until the product is 100% absorbed!

Killing Weeds Without Pesticides

Every dog parent has asked themselves the question: is pest control safe for dogs? Traditional pesticides often have toxic ingredients, and even utilize things like snail bait and fly bait which are no bueno for animals.

Avoid these not-so-pet-friendly chemicals and instead opt for these dog-friendly weed killers:

  • Neem Oil
  • Castor Oil
  • Canola Oil
  • Coffee Grounds

These natural solutions offer pest protection for your garden, and pet protection for you! Win, win!

Is Lawn Pest Control Safe for Dogs?

There are plenty of pest control options for your lawn that are purrfectly safe for pets. But first let’s go over the ones to avoid:

  • Organophosphates
  • Snail and slug baits

Ok now that the icky part is over, here are some super pet-friendly pest control options:

  • Essential oils - lavender, lemon eucalyptus, pine, tea tree
  • Diatomaceous Earth (DE) - harmless to dogs and humans, but deadly to many pests.
  • Boric Acid - controls insects, weeds, mold and fungi, but won’t harm canines.

Non-Toxic Lawn Care Tips

When it comes to lawn care, we believe that going natural is best for you, your pets, and the environment! Here are our few last tips to get a healthy lawn, using non-toxic lawn care products for furry friends:

  • Avoid synthetic fertilizers and herbicides
  • Try using essential oils for pest control
  • Opt for pesticide-free weed killer
  • Focus on nourishing your grass from the root up

And lastly, let your pets roll around in your beautiful chemical-free yard and then reward them with a healthy treat! We hear that some good ‘ole fashioned dog-lovin’ is often just what the lawn doctor ordered.



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