Gardening With Fido

Is your dog sabotaging your gardening plans? Man’s Best Friend has many adorable qualities, but a green thumb isn’t one of them. It can be challenging to strike the right balance between pets and plants. We are here to help! Below, a Newmarket, ON vet offers tips for gardening with dogs.


Before planting a garden, watch what your furry pal does when he is in the yard. Does Fido tend to run back and forth in certain spots when he is on squirrel patrol? If so, incorporate your pet’s traffic lanes into your garden design. That way, you’ll be working with your four-legged buddy, rather than against him.


One great option is to separate your yard into sections. Give Fido a fun doggy play area in one part of the yard, and then use another area for growing your plants. You can use fences to divide your yard into different zones, but you can also use driftwood, low brick walls; short, thick shrubs; or even potted plants to create borders.

Plant Choices

Be sure to plant only things that are not dangerous for Fido. You can check the ASPCA website for a full list of toxic and non-toxic plants.

Ground Cover

Is your dog’s urine killing your grass? There are many other attractive options for pet-friendly ground covers. Large paving stones are a good choice. You can also use pea gravel, thyme, buffalo grass, or even artificial turf. We don’t recommend using mulch, as it is dangerous for our furry pals. Cocoa mulch is particularly dangerous, as it’s toxic, but other mulch is also bad: Fido could get paw splinters, or he could possibly try to eat it and choke.

Box Gardens

Another great option is to try keeping plants in box gardens or container gardens. There are some really cute options for this! You can also get quite a bit of produce out of box gardens. Plus, they don’t use as much water as planted beds.


Make sure Fido has plenty of fun toys to play with, and is getting enough exercise. It’s also important that you take time to play with your pup every day. These things will keep Fido happy and healthy, and can help reduce bad habits, like digging.

Do you have questions or concerns about your dog’s health or care? Contact us, your Newmarket, ON animal clinic, today!

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