Bringing home a new puppy is an amazing experience, until you realize how much work these little bundles of curiosity actually are. This work includes creating a puppy-safe environment for your furry child to explore his new home. There are several hidden dangers in your backyard, from a poorly fenced swimming pool to potentially poisonous plants. Combine this with a puppy’s ability to turn a manicured lawn into disheveled pile of dirt and grass, and you have a potential recipe for disaster. Take a stroll through your own lawn to determine your home’s unique requirements to create a puppy-proof backyard.
A sturdy fence that surrounds the perimeter of your backyard is the ideal situation for a curious, growing puppy. If you have an existing fence in your backyard, examine it for any loose or broken slats or gaps larger than 2-4 inches. Repair the fencing as needed to ensure the puppy doesn’t escape the safety of your yard. Place a sign on the gate reminding family and visitors to close the gate behind them. In lieu of a proper fence, a puppy pen or outdoor dog enclosure is an acceptable way to allow your puppy to explore the backyard while preventing his unwanted escape.Keeping Poop under Control
Much like a human baby, puppies void themselves often and anywhere they choose. Teaching your puppy to void in a particular area of the yard is an excellent way to keep the poop problem in check, but not always feasible for a boisterous puppy. While the puppy is learning proper outdoor potty training it’s crucial to remove the fecal matter after its evacuated, especially if the puppy is helping himself to a little treat after pooping. Many puppies consume their own feces, and although there are several veterinarian approved cures, they’re not always successful. The easiest and most effective way to stop this habit is to immediately remove the feces from the backyard. The puppy will eventually grow out of this nasty habit, but in the meantime it’s important to keep him safe.Poisonous Plants
You’ve spent years cultivating a beautiful bed of flowers in your backyard. You might not realize those seemingly benign blooms are extremely toxic to your growing puppy. There are several dozen plants that are either toxic or poisonous to your puppy including:
- Tulip – Consumption of tulips can lead to diarrhea, severe vomiting, lack of appetite and depression.
- Peace Lily – Mouth ulcers, diarrhea and vomiting are common symptoms of peace lily ingestion.
- Clematis – A puppy that consumes the flowers or stems of the clematis can suffer from mouth ulcers, vomiting and diarrhea.
Familiarize yourself with species of flowers and plants in your own backyard to ensure they’re safe for your new puppy.Recognizing Potential Dangers
Learn to recognize the other potential dangers in your backyard to keep your puppy safe, no matter what the season. Here are a few unknown hazards that could be lurking in your backyard:
- Secure the perimeter of the swimming pool with a fence and teach your puppy how to get in and out of the water in the event of an accidental fall.
- Move any lawn furniture at least 5-6 feet away from the fence. In a matter of seconds the curious puppy can climb the lawn furniture and jump the fence. Clear snow drifts from the perimeter of the fence as well.
- Examine the label of your lawn and plant fertilizers and pesticides. Only use products that are non-toxic to your puppy.
Remember that beyond making your backyard a safe haven for your new puppy, it’s also crucial to keep an eye on him at all times. Even the safest yard can be fraught with hidden dangers, and only a puppy parent’s vigilance will prevent a potential disaster.
About the Author: Charles Grecian is a major dog lover, and used a havahart wireless coupon to get a new wireless fence for his puppy. Charles also uses the care.com coupon code to have his pet watched when he travels.