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According to the data from over 500,000 pet insurance policyholders, plant toxicity, insect stings or bites, sprains, and foreign body ingestion are among the top ten pet incidents.  While everyone pet-proofs the interior of their houses to ensure the safety of their belongings and pets, these numbers prove that the outdoors is just as important, if not a little more.

Considering your pet spends most of its outdoor time in your yard, you must ensure it’s designed to accommodate your furry friend’s zoomies without harm or damage.

So, here’s our comprehensive guide on creating a safe yard so you can have fun with your pets without any worries!

Pet-Friendliness And Outdoor Spaces

Planning your garden and backyard is relatively simple if it’s just for your use. However, when you welcome a fur baby, things change. That’s why having a safe space outdoors is just as crucial as pet-proofing the indoors. So, here’s how to create an outdoor space everyone can enjoy.

Consider Access Points

One critical area to inspect for a pet-friendly outdoor space is easy access, which means your furry baby should be able to enter and exit without any hindrance. The simplest method of solving this problem is installing dog doors; these come in different shapes and sizes, making it convenient to choose the right fit for your pet.

Keep in mind that dogs find it difficult to climb up and down stairs. If your home has a raised porch, consider installing a ramp to make it easier, especially if you have old dogs or cats. Easy access is also essential to help your pets enter the house quickly if it’s hurt or in danger. 

Plant Selection

While most are safe, certain plants cause issues for your pets, especially if you have a lot of greenery. The pollen can irritate their skin or eyes, and certain toxic chemicals can be very harmful. 

  • Toxic Plants To Avoid: Oleander, lilies, aloe vera, hyacinth, snake plant, sago palm, daffodil, hydrangeas, carnations, baby’s breath, nightshade, tulips, bird of paradise, and azaleas. 
  • Safe Plants For Pets: Orchids, palms, Christmas cacti, zebra plants, asters, camellia, sunflowers, roses, petunia, spider plants, hibiscus, magnolias, marigolds, begonia, zinnia, and holly fern.

Organize the Space

Firstly, start by decluttering the space; remove sharp edges, toxic materials, choking hazards, etc. Store such items away in a separate space or box. 


Then, work on transforming your outdoor space to accommodate your pet. Here are a few things to keep in mind:


  • Shade Spots: Like us, our pets are susceptible to excessive sunlight and heat, so plan a shady spot where they can sit or rest when tired. This will ensure your pet is comfortable and protect them against sunburn or overheating. You can also install sun-blocking shade material at any time as an additional precaution.
  • Water Station: Every living creature, including pets, needs proper hydration to carry out daily activities and maintain well-being. Create an easily accessible hydration zone near your patio, deck, or porch, and keep fresh water in a bowl or fountain. Don’t forget to clean this container regularly.  
  • Play Area: Pets need mental stimulation and physical activity. Designate one area to let your dogs or cats run, jump, or play freely. You can consider pet-friendly flooring options like rubber mats or artificial turf. Don’t forget to include pet-friendly toys and games. 

Partition the Garden

Install lawn edging around exposed flower and plant beds and plants to prevent dogs from trampling, urinating, or making a mess around the area. Similarly, you can use fences or low walls to keep pets out of specific zones like vegetable patches, sheds, natural installments, etc.


You can also raise the beds of the planted regions; the elevation makes it difficult for any pet to reach them. Raised beds also keep your plants in shape by providing air circulation and drainage.

Avoid Chemicals 

Whether it’s plant manure, weedicides, or ice melts, your pet can get seriously sick or even die when exposed to toxic chemicals. While pet-friendly options are available, avoiding them altogether is still better. 

Use landscaping fabric or mulch to prevent weeds from growing. You can also avoid ice melts by using landscaping fabric over pathways and a driveway grid outside your garage; unlike concrete surfaces, this creates a permeable surface that doesn’t retain water and eliminates the need for chemicals.

Outdoor Safety Tips For Pets


Apart from ensuring the design and components of your outdoor space are pet-friendly, here are some additional tips to keep your pets safe and healthy when out:


  • Plant rosemary, mint, lavender, garlic, lemon grass, marigold, sage, eucalyptus, etc., to deter fleas and ticks. Similarly, insects like ladybugs or nematodes should be introduced to help curb the flea population.
  • Designate a potty zone to prevent unnecessary odors and keep your yard clean. Enzymatic cleaners that use good bacteria to eliminate urine smell can help to let your pet know where not to do its business.
  • Store garden tools, fertilizers, pesticides, or other hazardous materials in a secure location to ensure they’re out of your pet’s reach. A high shelf or locked shed is the best solution for keeping curious pets away from danger.
  • Prevent digging by fencing specific areas. You can also bury flat rocks or plastic chicken wire in their digging hot spots. Similarly, using scents like citrus, cayenne, or vinegar will make your pet’s nose wrinkle and keep them away.
  • A yard has an ecosystem, so parasites and pests are bound to lurk around, especially if there are many moisture-ridden or shady locations. You can spray organic bug repellents or diluted neem oil around the region.
  • Foxtail weed is a significant risk to dogs because its barbed seeds can cause skin infections and even puncture wounds. Use a natural pesticide to get rid of these stubborn weeds.

Parting Words

Once you’ve cleared your yard of toxic chemicals or plants, removed hazardous material, and made a few additions to keep your pet comfortable, it’s time to enjoy playtime and bond with your paw-fect buddies!


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