After some hot temperatures this summer, your lawn can start to look pretty rough. Your dog’s urine is likely not helping much. Those yellow, burnt looking areas are called “grass scald”. How do you prevent it without harming your dog?
Why does it happen?
Dog urine can contain a large amount of nitrogen. Nitrogen is commonly found in fertilizer, but too much of it can have negative effect on your lawn. Urine can also be very salty, which can dry out the grass.
A common myth is that female dog urine is worse than males. In fact, it is the way in which they urinate that makes the difference. Squatting down directs the urine in a small area, concentrating the nitrogen. While male dogs tend to urinate up on things and/or spread it out into a larger area, diluting the amount of nitrogen.
“Dilution is the solution to pollution”unknown
This quote is popular in veterinary medicine overall, but definitely works on this subject. Watering heavily in the area your pet does its business will dilute the nitrogen to a level safe for your lawn. This will likely make your grass green and lush.
We strongly recommend treating the environment rather than the dog. This is especially important in breeds prone to urinary issues such as Bichons, Schnauzers, Dalmatians, Yorkshire Terriers, etc. Some of these supplements change the pH of the urine which can lead to urinary crystals or bladder stone formation. If you do use a supplement, be sure to research it thoroughly. Pick one with natural ingredients. Read the reviews from other users.
Since nitrogen is the problem, pick a fertilizer with small amount or no nitrogen. There are many other fertilizer options for your lawn. Organic fertilizers are safer for you and your pets. Besides ready-made commercial products some of the most common compositions include corn gluten meal, cow or poultry manure, compost, earthworm castings, bone meal, and seaweed or kelp. Some lawn care websites recommend pouring a can of beer on the scalded spots to repair them.
Pick A Spot
Your dog can be trained to eliminate in a specific spot in your yard. Products such as pheromone spikes can be placed in the area of your choice which then attracts the dog to do their business there.