Saturday, September 20, 2014

Puppy-Proofing the garden


Yes she might look cute but our new puppy is a garden menace !! She is part terrier and love nothing more than to dig, so I had to set about making sure my lovely garden was puppy-proof and I thought I would share with you what we have learned so far in our puppy owning journey.

1. Check the fencing of your property - is it secure ? We are lucky we have good sturdy 6ft wooden fences with concrete bases. Also we have a secure double gate system leading from the front to back - no puppy was escaping that way or so I thought. Turns out the front gate has a small gap under it and when puppy followed me outside to the recycle bin she wormed her way underneath and went for a jaunt to the neighbours. The gap is now secure.



2. If your puppy loves to dig - ours does - try a pine cone mulch on your flower beds, the texture of the cone discourages digging apparently. Although I could see Skoda running about with these in her mouth all day.

3. A better way of keeping them off your prize vegetable beds is fencing them off. In fact I spent today doing just that, after loosing my cauliflower seedling to the puppy who just loved pulling them up. I made mine out of leftover trellis but you can get pretty picket style fences at garden centres.


4. Make sure cables and hoses are out of reach - puppies love to chew and our puppy thought the hose was ideal. It is now on a reel and up out of puppies reach.


5. Check out what plants are harmful to puppies/dogs in your garden for example daffodils might look lovely in spring but if you have a digger the bulbs are toxic if chewed on. We are lucky the only daffodils we have are in a pot so safely out of inquisitive puppies way. There is a very good list HERE of things to watch out for in the garden when it comes to puppies.


 6. One of the downsides of puppies is poop - they all do it and if you are lucky and manage to train you little one, they do it outside on you nice clean lawn and not in the kitchen. The best thing to do is clean it up straight away and dispose of it (not into the compost it is not suitable).
 If you can't do it right away I recommend a daily sweep of the garden to keep on top of it.

7. The best advice for your puppy outside is supervision and play - if you are keeping an eye on your puppy and it has toys to play with, the damage to your garden and to the puppy is likely to be minimal.

Let me introduce you to our latest family member - this is Skoda.
We actually didn't name her, that was the name she came with it a few months old when she arrived in my daughter's school bag.
Her owners no longer wanted her and my youngest daughter is a devil for picking up stray animals.
I will be honest I had an absolute hissy fit !
 I didn't want another pet, let alone a puppy but the old owners didn't want her back and we did try to find a new home but to no avail, as there are so many puppies looking for homes these days.
We aren't even sure what type of puppy she is, although her mother was a terrier and is looks like a sheepdog might of been involved and the vet reckons there is some springer spaniel in there too - the ears apparently are a give away.
Whatever she may be it looks like she is here for the long-term, she officially became our cyber puppy on Wednesday when we got her chipped.   Truth be told we love her and she is darn cute when she is not eating my veggies.