Doggie Do’s and Don’ts for Your Lawn

One of the few downsides to dog ownership are the accompanying yellow spots that appear in your lawn from their urine. Before you replace your grass with artificial turf (though that certainly is an option) here are some suggestions to have a happy pet and a lush lawn.

It may be hard to believe, but having a lovely lawn and loving your dog don’t have to be at odds with each other. Actually, the substance in dog urine that yellows the grass is nitrogen… the same stuff found in your fertilizer! So your dog is simply killing your grass with kindness as she “christens” it. That is why the grass appears more green around the yellow spots, because the nitrogen levels were just strong enough to fertilize, not burn. With that in mind, there are a few options to consider trying:


Create a “potty place” in your yard that is landscaped with rocks or mulch. Reward your dog with treats when they defecate in this designated spot. We also carry a nasty little item called the “Pee Post” that is laced with pheromones that encourage your dog to pee on it. Basically it smells like urine (so maybe don’t order your treats along with it.) Hopefully the warehouse boys will bag it separately for you if you do. It’s gross but effective!


Make sure your dog gets plenty to drink as this will dilute the nitrogen levels in their urine. Should your dog not urinate in the “potty place” you’ve created, follow after Fido or Fifi with a watering can. There are apparently supplements such as brewer’s yeast and other solutions that are designed to neutralize nitrogen and/or improve digestion, but we don’t carry those at

You may have to cordon off certain troublesome patches to give your grass and seed treatments time to reestablish themselves. Some people resort to dog runs. But with a bit of patience, your smart dog will willingly learn to go in the places you prefer, and you’ll be able to be proud of both your dog, and your lawn!

Photo courtesy of ozmafan.

A Word of Warning

There are certain lawn/garden treatments to be avoided. Disulfoton is a pesticide not generally used, but it does show up in rose care products. Not only are these toxic to your pet, but they are often mixed with products like bone meal which make them very appetizing to pets. Slug and snail baits are also attractive to dogs, so use them with caution as these products can cause seizures, tremors, and even death. Herbicides such as Roundup can cause vomiting, so use them cautiously, keeping your dog and their toys inside until the product dries.

There is mixed information regarding the use of lawn chemicals and pets being more susceptible to bladder and other cancers, so use common sense and organic options whenever possible. Not only is this good for your pets, but also for the planet!

Featured photo of “Jimmy Dean rolling on the fresh-mowed grass” by Tony Alter.

One thought on “Doggie Do’s and Don’ts for Your Lawn

  1. I’m sure that you know this already, but some may not know about NutriVet Green Grass tablets, that turn the spots green rather than yellow. Always check with your vet first, but I think that they are harmless.

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