Our dogs are members of our family and therefore they deserve the appropriate outdoor space. Regardless of whether you are designing an entirely new outside area or just working with what you’ve got, there are a few important questions you can use to ensure you create the best space possible for your pooch. So let’s get started!
Is There A Specific Area For The Dog To Go To The Bathroom?
Many dog owners overlook choosing a designated spot for their dog to use as a bathroom area. This can actually cause lots of problems and confusion. Canines actually like to use specific areas to go to the toilet. And when the boundaries of where they can and can’t go are not clear it can cause anxiety for pets, especially if they get yelled at for going in an inappropriate spot.
The best solution is to simply pick an area that is conveniently away from play areas so that there isn’t a chance of you, your dog, or other family members stepping in a mess. Often a corner of the yard is best. Choosing an area with good drainage and that won’t be damaged by urine can also be big help.
Many owners of male dogs like to install a pee post such as a dog fire hydrant. This allows their boy pooch to mark their territory and pee without causing damage to other upright areas on the property such as trees, shrubs, and potted plants. However because of the classic relationship between the dog and fire hydrant you can use a fire hydrant for dogs in potty areas for female canines as well to add a bit of character.
Is There Enough Room To Play?
The perfect outdoor space for your dog will have enough room for it to play. How much room required will depend on the size and even the specific breed of dog you have. Having an area that is large enough that your dog can really run full out during play sessions would be the best possible scenario. Luckily of course a Chihuahua will not need as much space to do so as a Golden Retriever or a giant breed like a Great Dane.
If you do own a medium or large size dog and are limited in the amount of play space you can provide, you may want to consider finding a local park or even dog park where you and your pet can play. If you don’t have enough room to play don’t despair, you can always create an exercise routine for you and your pet that helps you to bond by walking or jogging around your neighborhood.
Is There A Space To Keep Cool?
After a vigorous play session or just on a hot day, having an area where your dog can cool off can literally be a life-saver. Brachycephalic dog breeds such as Pugs and Bulldogs for example overheat easily. And many breeds have thick coats, which makes it harder for them to cool down when the weather is warm.
You may be lucky enough to have trees on your property which provide shade where your pet can get out of the sun and enjoy a cool bowl of water. If you don’t have natural shade you may want to think about using a shade sail which can be strung up to help to block the sun rays. A kiddie pool can work too, and because they’re shallow they make a safe option for dogs to beat the heat.
Is It Secure?
This is one question you won’t want to forget to ask yourself. While an outdoor space can be a great place for your pet to play and exercise it also can be dangerous if it’s not properly secure. You’ll want to make sure that your pet can’t run out of the yard if it sees a cat, squirrel, or other small animal and decides to give chase.
By making sure your pet cannot escape your yard on its own you’ll also be protecting it from getting hit by a car or simply getting lost or stolen. And in certain areas secure fencing or walls may even be needed to keep your pet from safe from larger predators as well.
As you can see these questions can help you to create an outdoor space that will keep your pet not just safe but happy and healthy. So be sure to use them as a guideline and you will be well on your way to dog-friendly success.