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Help! Dog Pee is Killing My Lawn

Close up of a Green lawn with dead spots

It can be very frustrating to see yellow or brown spots of dead grass on your beautiful lawn. This problem is so common that some dog parents believe lush grass and their canine companions can’t coexist. Although there is not a perfect way to end urine spots, you can prevent dog pee from ruining your lawn. Fortunately, that’s not true as Keep reading to know about the causes and the ways to curb them if dog pee is killing your lawn.

Why Dog Pee is Killing My Lawn?

The chemical composition of the urine is responsible for damaging the grass. According to The Spruce Pets, acknowledging this fact and reacting accordingly will help you to keep your lawn fresh. The high concentration of nitrogen in dog pee is the most damaging component. It’s quite an irony given the fact that an optimal amount of nitrogen is essential for keeping the soil healthy.

You may have noticed that the grass around dead patches is always very lush. That’s because they get a safe amount of nitrogen from dog urine, which boosts their growth. Other than nitrogen, some salts and other compounds in dog pee are also killing your lawn. They affect the grass by altering the pH of the soil.  

What to Do if Dog Pee is Killing My Lawn?

Female Jack Russell Terrier peeing on the grass

Sharing the lawn with your canine companion allows you to make some amazing memories with him/her. However, all these thoughts can go down the drain if your pup decides to pee on the grass. My Pet Warehouse explains some steps that you can take to keep your lawn green and healthy.

Train Your Dog

It’s important to teach your pup to pee in a specific area of your yard to keep the grass safe. For example, a rocky gravel area or beds of soil (or sand) can be quite suitable as dog toilets. Alternatively, you can also train your dog to pee on a specific area of grass. This will keep the rest of your lawn healthy.

For training your pooch, you will need to accompany them when they go outside to relieve themselves. Grab their attention (by using a treat or toy) and guide them to the right spot. Although this technique is effective, your dog can take some time to learn the appropriate behavior. Therefore, it’s not an ideal method for those people who have limited time.

They can consider placing a pee post (paid link) in their yard to guide their canine friend. The bright yellow color (of these posts) attracts the dog towards the allocated space. Likewise, they contain pheromones that encourage pups to wee in the right spot.

Use Grass Pee Pads

Square of fake grass on a white background.

These small patches of grass are an excellent alternative for those dogs who prefer to eliminate on grass. Grass pee pads are particularly helpful for owners living in an apartment. They are very convenient to use and come in several different sizes to match the needs of your pooch. It won’t be very hard to train your dog to use these pads because they feel just like real grass.

Try Dog Rocks

How about using the dog pee to save your lawn rather than killing it? This is what you can do with dog rocks. (paid link) All you need to do is to place them in your pup’s drinking bowl, and they will remove the nitrates from the water. They will also filter traces of ammonia, tin, and any other impurity.

The best thing about using dog rocks is that it doesn’t alter the pH of the water. This means that your pooch gets clean drinking water and the urine he/she excretes acts more like a fertilizer. You will need to replace these rocks every 2 months for optimal results.    

Other Tips to Prevent Dog Pee Spots on Your Lawn

Lawn with large dead areas

The effects of dog pee on grass are very similar to that of nitrogen-rich fertilizer. A reasonable amount of this fertilizer is useful for your lawn, but using too much of it will kill the grass. Therefore, controlling the amount of nitrogen that stays on the grass can help you solve this problem. Doody Calls suggests that the following tips can help you to minimize the damage.  

Switch to a Low-Nitrogen Fertilizer

A fertilized lawn already has the required level of nitrogen and any more of it can burn the grass. Therefore, even if your dog’s pee contains very small quantities of nitrogen, it will be destructive for your lawn. To balance things out, you can either opt for a low-nitrogen fertilizer or fertilize your lawn less.

Rinse the Area Immediately

Close up of person's hand holding a spray nozzle on a water hose with water spraying out.

Diluting the urine can be quite useful for countering the harmful effects on the lawn. If your dog is habitual of peeing in the lawn, always keep a garden hose ready and rinse off the area as soon as your pooch urinates.

Increase the Water Intake of Your Dog

Drinking more water reduces the concentration of nitrogen in your dog’s urine, which will make it less damaging. Extra water is also helpful for the health of your canine friend. Other than encouraging your pooch to drink more water, you can also feed wet food.

Plant a Urine-Resistant Ground Cover

Try your luck with some types of grass that are more resistant to urine. For example, rye or fescue grass are much better options than the average lawn grass. You can also plant other plants, like clover, to prevent dog pee from killing your lawn.

Add a Supplement in Your Dog’s Diet

White dog with blue eye being given a dropper full of medicine on a grey background.

Some dietary supplements can help you solve this problem by binding with the nitrogen in the urine. However, some of these products can alter the pH of your dog’s pee and lead to other negative effects. Therefore, always consult your vet before making any changes to your pup’s diet.

Use a Lawn Repair Treatment

These treatments contain organic enzymes and soil cleansers that flush the excessive salts from the root zone of the grass to keep your lawn healthy and green.

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