Even a small water feature will cool pets on hot days.
Cool pets with a water feature.
- Most people think that water features are anything but pet-friendly and worry about having both pets and a water feature in their yard. In reality, water features are good for dogs.
- Water features provide an ongoing source of drinking water, but you need to use non-toxic cleaners in the water. Even a pond-less (stream like) feature will provide the water a pet needs.
- They also allow dogs to cool their feet. Since dogs perspire through their feet, keeping their feet cool helps them cope with the heat of summer.
- Making sure dogs stay hydrated on hot days when you are away from home is a major challenge solved by a water feature. A pet-friendly feature requires a few design and maintenance considerations, but little to no more expense than any other water feature.
Deal with puddles.
- Sporting breeds instinctively dig when they see water, so the best solution is to eradicate low spots that become puddles and lead to muddy paw prints across the floor.
- Short term fixes are as easy as placing rocks or bricks in holes and depressions. Swampy and puddle areas due to low spots in the yard or drainage problems should be dealt with by re-grading for the long-term solution.
- Female dogs, especially, like to nest and will dig a nest in cool places next to foundations. In wet weather, the nesting area holds water that can lead to foundation problems. This is one reason why dogs need to be encouraged to find shade in the right places.
- If there are few tree-shaded areas encourage dogs to seek shade by giving access to the north and east sides of the house or by making other shaded areas like the space underneath a trampoline accessible.
Beware of dangers on decks.
- Sadly, many dog owners have learned what dangerous places decks can be for their pets who have suffered heat strokes and other mishaps by being confined to the deck in hot weather. Dark wood decking gets extremely hot and wood decking often has painful splinters if not sanded regularly.
- If you are building or replacing a deck, consider a more pet-friendly choice if your pets will spend any time on the deck. One made of recycled products like Trex in a light, reflective color will be cooler and less maintenance than wood. Decks from recycled products are also splinter-free.
Tip of the Week reprinted courtesy of Associated Landscape Contractors of Colorado (ALCC) of which Foothills Landscape Maintenance, LLC is a member. ALCC is the only only professional organization for Colorado's landscape contracting industry statewide. Tip of the Week is copyrighted by Associated Landscape Contractors of Colorado and may be forwarded or copied by its members provided proper credit is given to ALCC