A beautiful, lush, and green lawn is the desire of every homeowner but can be made more difficult if you have a dog. Many dog owners have many areas where green grass should grow, but yellowish-brown dead grass is all they can achieve. These spots are known as dog urine spots in the dog-owner world. They’re a common mark in an otherwise lush, green lawn.
Take heed, however, all you moms and dads of pesky pooches. There are a few ways to prevent dog urine spots from destroying your landscaping intentions. First, let’s look at why these urine spots ruin the lawn.
Why Does Dog Urine Kill Grass?
It’s a common misunderstanding that “acid” in dog urine is the reason for the unsightly spots on the lawn, but that’s not the case. Instead, it’s nitrogen that is responsible for the dead patches of grass. Since dogs typically eat diets high in protein, dog urine contains nitrogen levels that are high enough to kill grass. Every time your pup urinates on the lawn, there’s a strong likelihood of another dead patch in the making.
Fun fact: female dogs are far more often the cause of destroyed grass than males. If you’ve watched both genders urinate, you’ll surely understand. Males dogs lift their legs and mark, urinating in a few places each time they need to relieve themselves. Female dogs, on the other hand, empty their bladders entirely in just one spot. The higher concentration of urine—and thus the nitrogen—makes for a larger patch that dies even faster.
Other Factors That Cause Urine Spots
While canines are the cause, other factors lend themselves to the urine spots on your lawn. For example, lawns that are heavily fertilized are likely to die faster when dogs urinate on them. That’s because fertilization adds nitrogen to the lawn. Nitrogen added to nitrogen during the process of urination compounds the problem.
New lawns, stressed lawns (those suffering from drought or disease) and those recently sodded or seeded are at higher risk of dying when dog urine is introduced into the mix. The addition of nitrogen to these stressors is the perfect equation for dead grass.
While urine spots might be destroying your lawn, poop stains might be destroying your carpet. Here are 5 easy ways to remove them!
Common Solutions That Fight Urine Spots
You might be asking yourself – what neutralizes dog urine? Rest assured, there are solutions to the dog urine spots wreaking havoc on your lawn. They do require diligence on behalf of the dog owners, but the result is well worth the effort. Put some or all of the following tips into action at your residence, and the result will be a greener, healthier lawn:
- Dilution – There’s a familiar rhyme in the dog world—or at least among dog owners who have experienced these dog urine spots in their lawns. “Dilution is the solution.” While it’s not the complete solution, it’s a perfect place to start in neutralizing dog urine. The more water your dog drinks, the more diluted his urine will be, and thus the nitrogen will be diluted.
- Water Your Lawn – In keeping with the premise of #1, watering your lawn works in much the same way. It helps to dilute the urine your dog eliminates. Make it a practice to water the areas where your dog urinates on a regular basis. Doing so every time is the best.
- X marks the Spot – If you can train your dog to urinate in the same place/places each time he or she needs to go, you’ll cut down on the urine spots throughout your yard, and will make the maintenance required (watering) much more manageable.
- Lower Protein Diet – Check with your vet to make sure your dog is consuming a proper diet. Since nitrogen is a result of protein metabolism, it’s possible your dog could benefit from eating a diet lower in protein.
- Quality Dog Food – Buy your dog the best quality dog food you can afford. The protein sources in these high-quality foods are significantly better, and the result is less by-product in your dog’s urine.
- Lawn Care for Stronger Lawns – Caring for your lawn properly can help combat urine spots. If your lawn is well cared for, it is more resistant to a dose of nitrogen. While this isn’t the solution, when combined with numbers 1-3 above, it can certainly be a huge benefit.
- Resistant Grass – Consider planted grass that is more resistant to dog urine spots. Fescues and ryegrass are good options, but if that’s not good for your region, your local nursery should be able to give you good suggestions.
There’s always work involved in owning a dog, but once you understand the causes of those pesky urine spots on your lawn, you can become more prepared to keep your lawn lush and green and the envy of all your neighbors. If you want a professional pet waste company to help keep your lawn clean and healthy, be sure to contact POOP 911 today!