Safeguarding your customer’s lawn against urine spots

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Updated Jul 15, 2019
Photo: Beth Hyatt/Total Landscape CarePhoto: Beth Hyatt/Total Landscape Care

For many pet owners, dogs are just another member of the family, and like all members of the family, nature does call to these four-legged companions.

Unfortunately, when it calls it tends to leave unsightly discoloration and dead grass in its wake. Your customers shouldn’t have to choose between their fluffy friends and having an attractive lawn, but what can you do about it?

For customers who have dogs, or are even considering getting one in the future, there are a few grass-saving methods that could save the landscape you’ve worked hard to create and also keep Rover out of the dog house.

Use hardscapes

For customers with smaller areas to cover, talk to them about the hardscape option. Hardscapes are not only beneficial on the dog urine front, they are also fairly low maintenance for customers who may not have much time to devote to yard care.

Other grass types, other green options

If what your customer has down already just isn’t standing up to Fido’s bathroom breaks, talk to your customers about different grass options.

There’s a plethora of grass options readily available, so check out a few attractive options that fit the look and style of your customer’s yard. Bermuda grass is a hardy warm-season grass while tall fescue is a more tolerant cold-season grass.

Another idea is to take grass out of the picture and add in green alternatives. Clover lawns have become more popular over the years and they do not stain the way grass lawns do when exposed to dog urine.

Diluting the urine

If your customers aren’t up to the task of changing up their grass or adding in hardscapes, suggest diluting the urine. This will take more vigilance on their part, but if they are willing to dedicate the time to it, it may prove worth it.

Encourage your customers to watch their pup when it goes to the bathroom. Immediately after, take the watering hose and rinse the soiled area. This will flush the urine out and dilute harmful elements in it.

Put up fences  

If your customers aren’t opposed to adding a few fences, these can also help keep curious pooches away from areas your customers want preserved.

Keeping important plants inside a fence can keep dogs away from them, and they also help add a sort of courtyard feel to the landscape. Wooden lattice or picket fences are attractive and functional in this case.

Fencing can also be used to create a specific bathroom area for your customer’s canine. If there’s a designated spot for the dogs to use the bathroom, it keeps them out of the main portion of the yard and preserves the grass.

Behavior modification

Another way to go about solving this issue is to talk to your customer about looking into techniques to alter the dog’s bathroom behavior. Training a dog to use a designated toilet area can be more difficult if they are older, so be sure to stress this to customers with younger pups.

To ensure easier clean up, this designated spot should be covered in dirt or gravel or have grass down that can resist the effects of urine.

Some research has suggested that mixing a small amount of tomato juice in with a dog’s food can help neutralize the harmful effects of urine.

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