Most people think their backyard is a safe place to let their pets have a little free reign. For the most part, they are, but there are some common things that are in our yards that we don’t think to look at. Here’s some things I have come across that maybe you haven’t thought about.
- Gardens: Many plants are potentially poisonous for dogs, as well as other pets. Things like aloe vera, lilies, foxglove, and crocuses can be harmful to your pet, some having worse effects than others. To learn more about the different plants, fruits, and vegetables that can be poisonous, check out this article on PetEducation.com.
- Lawn Chemicals: Some people use chemicals to treat their lawn for a multitude of purposes. Always make sure that the chemicals are completely dry before letting your pets out to play.
- Slug/Snail Killers: If a pet, specifically dogs, sees this bait, they may think that it is food for them. I checked out the label on a product for slug/snail removal and it recommended keeping your pet out of the treated area while the bait is present.
- Water Features: Standing water can promote mosquitoes, which carry disease that can harm both you and your pets. Using something like the Water Wiggler can deter mosquitoes and also attract more birds to your birdbaths. Another water feature that you need to be careful with is having a pond or swimming pool. You could use something like this Animal Away to keep your pets safe (it will also keep unwanted predators/pests out), or perhaps install an underground fence to promote safety for your dog.
- Charcoal or Gas Grills: If you have a charcoal grill in your backyard, make sure that the charcoal is put away so your pet doesn’t mistake it for something to chew on. If you have a gas grill, make sure that your pet isn’t able to get to the lines, because if your pet chews on them it could pose a potential threat to your pet, and also to you at a later date if it goes unnoticed. You should also keep an eye out while using your grill, because if a pet gets too close they could end up burned.
- Holes in Fence: You never know when another critter might have made its way through your fence, or perhaps just wear and tear over the years has caused your fence to weaken. Check your fencing on a regular basis to ensure that your pet can’t get out of the yard, because searching for a lost pet is definitely not a fun task.
- Tools and Lawn Equipment: Having sharp tools and equipment in your yard can pose a threat if your pet starts playing with them. Keeping tools and other equipment in a storage shed, or an area that your pet can’t access, can prevent serious accidents from happening.
- Trash Cans: If you are like me, you keep your trash cans out back, but this can pose a threat to your pets. First off, you don’t want them eating the garbage. Second, if your pet jumps onto the can incorrectly, it could potentially fall on them causing them harm, especially if you don’t notice right away and they are trapped. Keeping your trash cans where your pets can’t get to them, either outside the fence or somewhere they aren’t able to access, is a good way to remove this potential threat from your yard.
Please feel free to comment with other backyard hazards you have encountered that you would have never thought of.
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