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How to Create a Dog-Friendly Garden


You know what it’s like, you have a lovely, peaceful and beautiful garden and then you buy a dog who decides he wants to run through, dig up and pee on every square foot of it! So the question becomes, how do you create a garden that looks great, stays nice but is completely dog-friendly?

Well, there are many ways in which you can landscape your garden to suite both you and your dogs needs. By creating and designating specific areas for all his activities you can keep the rest of the garden undisturbed and looking nice. Follow these tips to create the perfect dog-friendly garden:

Build a path – Most dogs like to patrol, looking for intruders and keeping you and your home safe. If you don’t already have a path in your garden you will probably have noticed that you dog runs round a set route, creating a warn track in the grass. You probably won’t be able to change his route but if you build a stone path where it already is then he should stick to it, and a stone path looks much nicer than warn out grass.

Keep it clean – What you don’t want is your dog peeing and pooping all over your lovely garden! So why not build a specific toilet area in your garden where you can train them to go. A small area of flagstone or gravel in particular is easy to clean, looks great and is suitable for all your dog’s natural bodily functions.

Create a shady place – As much as dogs love basking in the sun, when they are tired from running about, they like a nice shady and relaxing spot as much as we do. So why not build a nice arbor or gazebo where both you and your dog can relax in the shade on a warm summer’s day.

Keep it interesting – When dogs get bored and have too much energy they tend to dig and that is the last thing you want happening in your garden. So to keep them entertained, without wrecking your garden, make sure you have enough dog toys about, open space to run about in and lots of interesting paths and areas they can explore.

Get big plants – No matter what you do to try and stop it, your dog is likely to pull up some of your plants. However, he is less likely to be able to pull up bigger plants so why not invest in larger ones or put cages around the smaller ones until they grow big enough to stand strong against the dog.

So there you have it, some top tips for creating a dog-friendly garden that will keep him entertained and keep you happy all year round.

This article was submitted by Ben West, a professional garden designer who has many years experience of creating personal landscape gardens that both pets and people love. He also writes a blog on his site which is full of useful gardening tips and advice.


About Author

Devoted pet owner and now, devoted pet editor, Judi worked in traditional offices, keeping the books and the day-to-day operations organized. Taking her dog to work every day for over a decade never seemed odd. Neither did having an office cat. She knows what it's like to train a new puppy and she's experienced the heartache of losing beloved companions. Retired, she currently lives with her spoiled dog and four chickens (who are, interestingly enough, also spoiled).


  1. I’ve had this problem for years with my dog Abby plodding across my garden- I used to put short fencing around it only to have her jump over it anyway in her quest to nose around. Unfortunately we had to have her put to sleep this winter and now I would give anything to see her big hoof prints in the soil. My smaller dog Rosie is very precise in where she walks, following my pavers between the rows. But last fall she sat watching me pull up carrots, and later I found her digging her own to munch on. I laughed and laughed at the intelligence it took for her to figure out she didn’t have to wait for me to dig one up for her. I really enjoyed reading your suggestions and will try some of them out this year.

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