Dog owners know the struggle of maintaining an outdoor area that is beautiful enough to enjoy while providing ample space for their pets. Animals can wreak havoc on grass, gardens, and other vegetation, so using dog friendly landscaping ideas can eliminate these headaches.
In addition to providing a more eye-catching outdoor space, opting for dog friendly landscaping can keep your beloved pet safe and healthy. Unfortunately, homeowners might already have some toxic ornamental vegetation options in their backyard without knowing how hazardous they can be to their four-legged friend.
By exploring dog friendly backyard landscape design ideas, your outdoor living space will stay attractive and your pet will remain safe.
The 10 Most Popular Dog-Friendly Landscape Design Ideas
If you have a new puppy in the family or are tired of staring at a dead lawn, you probably need some dog friendly backyard landscaping ideas. These popular dog friendly landscaping options can relieve your yard and help you reclaim your time.
- Switch to artificial pet turf
- Plant non-toxic vegetation
- Install barriers around your garden and flowers
- Create a dog path
- Include a splash pool
- Offer a sandbox for digging
- Choose grass alternatives
- Establish a designated dog area
- Provide enough shade
You can also use dog-friendly hardscaping options, like patios or stepping stones, to break up your yard and improve curb appeal with functional spaces.
#1. Switch to Artificial Pet Turf
Artificial pet turf can be ideal if you need dog friendly landscaping without grass but desire a green yard. This product varies from standard outdoor turf, as it has ample drainage for your pet’s urine.
Unlike natural grass, this turf is durable enough to withstand continuous running, jumping, and patrolling around your perimeter. In addition, artificial pet turf eliminates those muddy pawprints that your four-legged friend leaves in the house on a rainy day. This feature will make your outdoor landscape and your home’s interior more manageable.
#2. Plant Non-Toxic Vegetation
Dogs are curious creatures and like to explore their surroundings. This behavior can include chewing on plant leaves or eating fallen fruit around the yard. However, not all plants are dog friendly landscaping plants, and some can be hazardous to their health.
Luckily, numerous dog friendly landscaping plants will work in any garden or backyard and are entirely safe for your pet to have around. You can maintain a beautiful landscape without worrying about your dog by eliminating any toxic plants and replacing them with dog friendly landscaping plants.
#3. Install Barriers Around Your Garden and Flowers
Sometimes, dog friendly backyard landscaping ideas include barriers to protect your pup as much as your plants. There are dozens of barrier options available that will prevent your four-legged friend from damaging your outdoor space.
Keeping your pet away from your garden and flower beds will eliminate any chance of it digging, getting dirty, damaging your plants, or even getting sick from eating something it shouldn’t. Homeowners can choose a wireless pet fence and remote collar, traditional wood fencing, or even materials like brick and stone for a customized design.
#4. Create a Dog Path
Dogs are habitual creatures; if left outdoors for too long, they will soon have your natural grass beaten down in the areas where they prefer to walk regularly. Often, these bare areas extend along your outdoor perimeter. Dogs like to patrol the yard so they can experience the sights, sounds, and smells on the other side of the fence. It might require some creative dog friendly backyard landscaping ideas to keep you and your furry companion satisfied.
If you can’t beat them, join them by creating a dog path with safe surfaces, like dog friendly landscaping rocks or pea gravel. Alternatives for covering your dog’s favorite path would be paving garden stones or wood planks. The options for a dog path can be as unique as you want them to be and will add beauty to your outdoor landscape while being dog-friendly.
Ensure that you use dog friendly landscaping rocks so they don’t burn their feet or harm their paws on sharp edges.
#5. Include a Splash Pool or Water Feature
Many dog breeds love playing in the water, especially on hot summer days. Including a splash pool in your backyard can provide your pet with a quick way to cool off and will entertain it without you worrying that it will dig up your flowerbed.
Some dog owners will use a small kiddie pool on their patio, while others create a permanent water feature in the yard. No matter which route you choose, providing easy access to fresh water is a win-win situation for creating dog friendly landscaping.
#6. Offer a Sandbox for Digging
Digging and burying items is an instinct for dogs. So, if you have a four-legged friend that loves to dig up your yard, you can save your garden by providing your pet with its own digging space in the form of a sandbox.
Choose a sandbox or build an area large enough for your furry friend to dig and lie down in. Not only is digging a mental exercise for your pet, but a sandbox can also be a terrific way for it to cool down by lying in a freshly dug hole. Be sure to include bones or toys in the sandbox, and create a mentally-challenging activity for your pet to engage in while outside rather than damaging your favorite rose bush.
#7. Choose Grass Alternatives
If you prefer natural greenery rather than artificial pet turf, you still have options for dog friendly landscaping without grass. Many ground coverings will stand up to dog urine and continuous foot traffic, providing that green space you desire and offering less maintenance than a standard lawn.
Some non-toxic ground coverings that make terrific dog friendly landscaping choices include:
- Creeping thyme is a soft, green ground cover with bright flowers in various colors.
- Irish moss is another option that produces dainty, white flowers and dense foliage.
- Labrador violets have wide, deep green leaves with purple flowers.
- Silver carpet is an evergreen with green to silvery-white leaves.
- Snow-in-summer is a bed of delicate white flowers and soft foliage.
These alternatives allow you to create dog friendly landscaping without grass and the care that comes with it. They spread horizontally and resemble turf but are more durable and less expensive, making them ideal for busy homeowners on a budget. You can still enjoy a lush, green backyard without worrying about brown spots from your pet’s regular potty breaks. Plus, you have plenty of choices to choose one that works with your existing color scheme.
#8. Establish a Designated Dog Area
Sometimes, the best way to arrange dog friendly landscaping is to have a designated area just for your pet. For example, a functional space might include pet turf for potty breaks and a splash pool or sandbox for digging. A designated space will also allow your pet to join you outdoors when visitors come without bothering newcomers to the home or getting underfoot.
Homeowners can establish a large dog run or pen that includes everything your animal needs outdoors, including shelter and water. This alternative will help keep your backyard looking beautiful while making your outdoor space welcoming for your pet.
#9. Provide Enough Shade
When your pet is outside, it must have a place to go for shade and shelter, especially in hot or inclement weather. If you do not provide a spot to protect it from the elements, your dog will create one by digging or damaging your backyard to find a suitable alternative.
The easiest way to provide shade and shelter for your four-legged friend is to include a dog house in your yard. However, this choice might not be feasible for some homeowners. Other dog friendly landscaping options include planting large trees with ample foliage or installing a pergola or canopy that will meet your pet’s needs. This way, your dog has a place to get out of the hot sun and remain dry on rainy days.
#10. Use Hardscaping for Dog-Friendly Landscape Options
Hardscaping options can include several dog friendly landscaping materials such as pea gravel, patios, and stepping stones. Wood chips and mulch fall under this classification since they are not living ground covers. These choices help make cleaning up after your pet a lot easier and eliminate the chances of it destroying your lawn.
One vital consideration when opting for hardscaping is color and material composition. You want to choose items that will not retain heat and burn your pet’s paws on hot summer days. Select lighter-colored stones and ensure that they are big enough to avoid getting stuck between your dog’s toes, which can hurt it and cause injury.
Dog-Friendly Landscape Options are Possible
Dog friendly landscaping options are possible regardless of where you live or the climate. By providing elements in your backyard that cater to your pet, you can avoid dead spots on your grass, holes in your flower beds, and even a trip to the vet if your animal eats toxic vegetation.
Landscaping choices for any budget make it easy to create a dog-friendly outdoor space that will keep your backyard looking great and functional for your four-legged friend. You even have the option to create beautiful, dog friendly landscaping without grass. Alternatively, you could create a lush, backyard oasis with dog friendly landscaping plants.
Choose one or more of these design ideas and start making the best area possible for your pet while providing an attractive outdoor space for your home.
Contact the landscaping team at ALD today to create a space your furry friend will love.