Now that Spring is finally here, North Country gardeners are out in full force, trimming the hedge, planting the begonias and tilling the earth in the flowerbeds to make them ready for bedding plants. You’ve raked out the lily patches, untangled the tulips and daffodils from all those stray twigs and pulled the new weeds that collected around the fledgling greenery like a moth to flame.
And right there next to you is your best friend. Does your dog enjoy being outdoors with you? Pet owners know that a tired dog is a good one and most are eager to have Daisy in the yard whenever they are. However, many pups enjoy not only a good roll in the fresh dirt, (prompting a trip straight to the bathtub) but another favorite pastime: digging in the tempting moist soil.
Sometimes pet parents have to use their imagination to keep the flowers healthy and thriving, and the puppies out of trouble. Dogs like to dig, it’s a fact. Some like it more than others, such as Terriers and Border Collies, that have a natural inclination toward digging due to genetics. Dogs may dig out of boredom or because they like the scent of dirt or are burying something. Some dogs just like the activity. You will likely need to use your imagination to preserve your garden and keep your pet out of mischief and safe as well.
Try these tips to help keep your pet out of the flowers or the vegetable garden:
Place a sprinkler next to the garden and turn it on when your puppy heads for the forbidden zone. A fast spinning type sprinkler works especially well for this. Daisy will usually learn to avoid the flowers pretty quickly when she gets a good spritzing of cold water. Patience is required because you will need to be close by to activate the sprinkler when she heads for the garden.
On the other hand, some dogs really enjoy water and don’t mind getting wet. In those cases you will probably have to try something else.
- Landscaping Stones
Purchase some small landscaping stones from your local home and garden store and create a barrier to discourage entry by covering the floor of the flowerbed. Dogs dislike treading on the sharp little stones and will avoid them. Or you can obtain larger landscaping stones and create a barrier by stacking them to build a short fence around your flowers or vegetables. This works best with small dogs for obvious reasons.
- Thorny plants and vines
Roses, cactus plants or thorny vines can be placed strategically around the garden to discourage puppies from investigating further. Dogs do not like getting stung by prickly plants any more than we do and will avoid the area. Always do a little research before planting anything your pets may have access to. There are some varieties of foliage that are extremely detrimental to dogs and other animals. Remember too that fertilizers are very dangerous. Be sure to keep them away from pets and children.
Red pepper is a fair dog repellent. Sprinkle some around your garden and add a bit to the plants and flowers to discourage further investigation. This works best if your youngster actually tastes or chews the plants, however. Don’t worry, the pepper won’t hurt the plants and you can use either red or black pepper.
When all else fails there’s nothing like a good fence to keep your puppy out of the flowers. There are a number of fancy designs for landscaping gardens, such as plastic interlocking or wire panels. Sink the fencing into the soil eight inches deep or more for stability and be sure to surround the whole area. This is ideal for smaller breeds, but you will need a higher barrier for larger dogs.
Visit this website called “Dog Tip: Garden Tips for Dog People” to find a wealth of excellent information.
If you have enjoyed this article please consider subscribing to my column. There is no cost and each time I publish an article it will be delivered conveniently right to your inbox! Subscribe by clicking on the button marked “Subscribe” at the top of this page.
Follow me on Facebook at this link: