Is Your Backyard Dog-safe?
By Lucy Fagan
Common Backyard Dangers to Dogs
Dogs are a crucial part of American’s lives, with 89.7 million registered as pets in the United States in 2017. Dogs are wonderful companions who offer unconditional love at all times. As dog owners, an important way that we can show them love in return is by doing what we can to keep our dogs safe and this includes creating a dog friendly backyard.
Although there are few things that dogs love more than playing outside, backyards can be packed with hazards that could seriously harm your beloved companion. Making sure your backyard is a dog-friendly space will keep them safe while providing peace of mind for you. The first step to creating a safe outdoor space for your pets is to understand what hazards are out there. Here are a few examples:
Damaged or unsuitable fencing
Making sure your dog cannot get out of the yard should be a priority for any pet owner. It’s important that you ensure the fence is an appropriate size for the dog. Think about the size of the dog and how high she can jump. Small chain-link fences will not stop bigger dogs from getting out of the garden. Also make sure you check the fence regularly for any damage. Not only could the dog potentially get through and escape out of a broken fence, he could also hurt himself on any splintered wood.
Plants and flowers
While plants and flowers make a wonderful addition to any outdoor space, many of them can prove toxic if ingested by your dog. Common plant varieties poisonous to dogs include hyacinths, tulips, begonias and lilies. If you have previously had these particular plants in your garden or if your neighbors grow them, then regularly check for any regrowth. If you are worried about whether a plant is safe for your dogs, it’s best to remove it.
All garden tools should be kept stored in a secure place and not left out on the ground. Shears, stakes, and trowels could seriously injure your pet. There is even a serious risk of your pet getting tetanus if a rusty tool pierces their skin.
Pesticides and Insecticides
You may want to keep rodents, insects, slugs and snails out of your backyard but the poison in these products can make your dog seriously ill with vomiting, diarrhea, and even respiratory failure. These chemicals, along with fertilizers and herbicides, should always be kept well away from your pets.
By taking a few simple steps to eliminate potential dangers, owners can ensure that their beloved dog is always able to enjoy a healthy and safe space within which to play outside. And remember, if you are worried that your dog has been hurt while playing outside, call your veterinarian immediately.