Wednesday, January 25 2012
Creating a dog-friendly garden
If dogs are man's best friend, then it must be said that they are also a neat and tidy garden's worst enemy.
More than most other family pets, canines of all breeds, shapes and sizes love nothing more than to tear around the backyard in fits of excitement - often knocking over plants and trampling vegetable patches in the process.
On top of this issue - or perhaps we should say under it - are all those unsightly holes your pooch enthusiastically digs up whenever you're not looking.
But your household's outdoor escape area can also be a space for the dog to have its fun - all you need to do is pet-proof the landscape by applying some garden DIY skills.
For smaller breeds you might want to create a puppy playhouse, which can be a rectangular sandpit nestled against the shed, bordered by pine sleepers and with a timber ramp up to the platform.
The next step will be to train your dog to use the pit by hiding treats just under the surface and providing positive reinforcement for digging away from the garden itself.
With step one successfully completed, why not raise the garden beds to a height away from the danger of those squashing paws?
Your pet-proofing project will require timber, screws, a crowbar and a power sander to bevel sharp edges and chip away any splinters, as well as a few wheelbarrows worth of sand.