A Chemical Free Yard For Your Pet

Mar 21, 2023 | Garden, Maggie Lane Designs, Pet Health, Pets

Happy Wednesday everyone!  Today was so beautiful with sunny skies that it made me want to go out and start my yard work (boy do I have a lot to do).  I always consider the dogs when fertilizing and planting.  We have a grub problem this year and I’m on the search for a pet safe solution to fix our problem.  If you’ve got any ideas, I would love to hear them!  Today we are talking about A Chemical Free Yard For Your Pet.  I’ve done several posts on landscaping and toxic plants (see below).  Because there is a wealth of information out there on this subject, I broke it down into a few more categories.

Took Jake and Maggie for a walk.

The pups love going for a walk.  See what Jake is looking at!

Creating a chemical and toxic free yard for your pet
A great resource for toxic and non-toxic herbs – https://betterpet.com/herbs-for-dogs/
Culinary herbs like parsley, basil, oregano, sage, ginger, cinnamon, chamomile, thyme, mint, and rosemary are all safe for dogs. Apart from not being toxic, they also pack a strong taste, so your pet will unlikely bother them. Aromatics such as lavender are also a great choice.  Did you know that sprinkling cinnamon down on your mulch will kill those pesky little mushroom beds that pop up!  
A strawberry patch, apple, orange, pears, and peach trees, and raspberry canes are all great dog-friendly additions to your garden. Dogs can learn to pick berries or other fruit if they acquire a taste for it, so don’t be surprised if your harvest below “dog height” is bare 🙂 
For a list of frequently encountered toxic plants, go to aspca.org/toxic.
Creating a chemical and toxic free yard for your pet
A study by Purdue University veterinary researchers found exposure to herbicide-treated lawns and gardens increased the risk of bladder cancer by four to seven times in Scottish Terriers. The study adds to earlier research conducted by the National Institutes of Health that found elevated rates of canine lymphoma in dogs exposed to lawn pesticides. The level of risk corresponded directly with exposure to these chemicals: the greater the exposure, the higher the risk.
If your garden requires some extra protection against bugs, choose organic products such as copper sulfate or Bordeaux mixture, a blend of copper sulfate and slaked lime used to control fungus and downy mildew. These are safe for dogs, even if ingested.  Choosing plants that naturally require less in the way of chemical pest protection. Roses, for example, are highly susceptible to pests, so either be prepared with organic people- and pet-friendly Safer insecticidal soap or choose something else to plant.
Creating a chemical and toxic free yard for your pet
Potential Danger: Sweet-smelling but potentially harmful cocoa bean mulch
Cocoa mulch, made of cocoa bean shells, is a by-product of chocolate production. It is commonly used in landscaping, but pet parents would do best to use an alternative mulch; if eaten in large quantities, cocoa mulch can be toxic to pets.
“Dogs are attracted to the fertilizer’s sweet smell,” says Dr. Steven Hansen, ASPCA Senior Vice President of Animal Health Services, “but like chocolate, cocoa bean mulch can be too much for our canine companions.”
The ASPCA notes that, “Ingestion of large amounts of cocoa bean mulch, which contains residual amounts of theobromine—a methylxanthine found in chocolate and known to be toxic to dogs—may cause a variety of clinical signs. These typically start with vomiting, diarrhea and elevated heart rate, and if large amounts are consumed, they may progress to hyperactivity, muscle tremors and possibly other more serious neurological signs.”
“We advise pet parents not to use cocoa mulch in areas where dogs can be exposed unobserved, particularly dogs who have indiscriminate eating habits,” says Dr. Hansen. Use instead a nontoxic alternative, such as shredded pine, cedar or hemlock bark.

Maggie and her sticks!

Jake And Maggie love picking up the sticks that fall from these trees.  She is in her own little world chewing up a stick while Jake watches from above.  

Creating a chemical and toxic free yard for your pet
When adding a pond or fountain, make it dog-friendly by keeping the water clean and fresh (a pump is often essential; stagnant water breeds mosquitoes), and, of course, chemical free. The water must be drinkable, and it needs to be shallow enough for Buddy to safely enter and exit.  Keep your bird baths free of algae and mosquitos by filling them with fresh water daily.  If you have a dog like my Jake who likes to drink from them, be sure to keep your bird feeders and baths clean.

I’m Bobbi Jo, a lab-lover who took my passion for animals and dogs and turned it into something bigger.  When I adopted Jake and Maggie, my love for them became the driving force behind Two Adorable Labs, and my blog was born.  My hope is to not only share them with the world, but to help educate others on the importance of animal health and well-being. 

I love hearing from all of you and do my best to respond to each and every one of you.  I always enjoy your comments, feedback, and suggestions so keep them coming!  If I’ve posted a recipe (for our human and our furry friends) and you try it, don’t forget to tag me on Instagram @twoadorablelabs and use #twoadorablelabs​.

If you do try and love my recipes, I would greatly appreciate a comment and rating.  I read every single one and respond to them.  It also lets Google know that the website contains quality content.  The more comments and 5-star ratings, the more Google will show my blog in search results!  Thank you so much! 

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Our mom loves cooking for us and our dad so much that she started a brand new food blog called www.magnoliadelights.com.  

Jump over and check it out!

Love, Jake and Maggie

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