While it’s always a wonderful treat to have fresh fruits and veggies available, it’s important to note that gardens and gardening can be veritable hazards for those who live with dogs.
Chemicals, sharp tools, and even plants, themselves, can can quickly cause an emergency for dogs. The last thing you want when you’re tending to your garden is to have to drop everything for a trip to the animal hospital.
Be sure to take precautions when your four-legged friend is out in the garden with you so that they don’t get hurt. Here are a few tips for gardening safely when you have a dog.
1. Keep Toxic Chemicals & Dangerous Plants Out Of Reach
While this seems like a no-brainer, especially if you also have kids, it’s important to remember that what isn’t dangerous for us may be dangerous for dogs.
Be certain that no flowers or fruits in your garden have poisonous leaves that could harm your dog should they take a curious lick.
Also, certain fruits and vegetables can harm dogs, especially when eaten in large quantities. Avocados, for example, have hard pits that can damage teeth, cause choking, or create gastrointestinal obstructions.
If you decide to grow plants, fruits, or vegetables in your garden that might be hazardous, make sure your dog can’t get to them unsupervised. Fence the area off or grow them in a place on your property that your dog can’t access.
And always keep chemicals out of reach at all times. Fertilizers, pesticides, weed killers, and more are toxic when directly consumed by dogs. Seal these properly and store them where your dog absolutely cannot get to them.
2. Keep Dogs Away From Sharp Tools
This should also be a no-brainer, but accidents still happen. Any form of pruning shears, cutters, hoes, and shovels can potentially be dangerous.
Never leave these tools out when you’re not using them. This isn’t just good safety advice for your dog’s sake. These tools can harm anyone who enters your yard, humans included.
3. Never Leave Dogs Alone In The Yard
You may joke that your dog is your baby, but regardless, it’s important to make sure you treat them as such by never leaving them alone.
Not only could they dig up your plants, but they might even get into the aforementioned tools and chemicals you may be using on your plants. So do everyone a favor, and keep dogs in sight.
Even if you’re not gardening, you should always supervise your dog outside. Wild animals, dog thieves, and any number of dangers could enter your yard. Keeping an eye on your dog can help you respond to these dangers quickly, and that could end up saving your dog’s life.
4. Keep The Gate Closed
This may not be applicable for everyone, but if you have a fence, it’s best to make sure the gates always stay closed. It can be easy to forget when you’re gardening and hauling items into your yard, but always double check.
Dogs are prone to chase things, or even just be curious and wander off no matter how well trained they are. And while a fence isn’t perfect for protecting your dog from thieves or wild animals like coyotes, it definitely helps reduce the risks.
Keep them in sight and keep them secure!
5. Reward Your Pup
There are just as many goodies as there are hazards in your garden. Make sure your dog shares in the bounty when it’s harvest time.
Things like seedless watermelons, strawberries and blueberries make for excellent treats. You can use these to reward your dog when they come inside. It may just help them learn to come when you call, and that can be a very important way to keep them safe in the future.
What other gardening safety tips do you have for fellow dog parents? Does your dog ever get treats from your garden? Let us know in the comments below!