Dog urine can create unsightly yellow or brown patches in a lawn. Without early intervention, dog pee can permanently kill your grass. Fortunately, you can treat neutralize the pee and treat the dog urine spots on the grass to have a lush green lawn.
Dog Urine Spots on Lawn
Dog urine contains high concentration of nitrogen and other salts that are too much for grass to handle causing it to burn or die. Although nitrogen is an essential component of a healthy soil also found in lawn fertilizers, in high concentration it can cause plants and grass to die.
Dog urine spots on grass are usually ringed with thick lush grass that tend to grow taller than the rest of the lawn. This is because smaller concentrations of nitrogen spills on the outside circle of the spot and becomes useful to the grass around.
Dog pee may be highly acidic or alkaline depending on her diet. This may also alter the soil or turf pH levels in areas where a dog has urinated. The chemical composition of urine may not differ based on the type of breed or gender of a dog and this disregard the myth that female dogs tend to cause more harm on lawns than males.
Female dogs usually squat when they urinate, thus creating a small but dense spot of urine on the grass. Males usually wander and urinate along the way on trees and shrubs instead of peeing on spot in a lawn. This is the reason you will find more spots or damages with a female dog as compared to a male one.
How to Treat Dog Urine Spots on Grass
You can minimize the severity of dog urine on grass and help the grass recover back to normal. Here is what to do:
Watering regularly or immediately after the dog has urinated can help dilute and spread nitrogen and salts to a wide area making grass to handle it effectively unlike when concentrated in one sing spot. You can decide to water every morning or immediately after your canine has urinated.
To fix green lush rings around the urine spots, applying nitrogen fertilizer will make the rest of the lawn grass healthy, strong, and tolerant to drought and urine salts.
Since an excess of nitrogen from dog urine is what is killing your grass, adding more nitrogen to the affected areas will worsen the situation. Until you get the urine spots under control, stop fertilizing your lawn in the areas where your dogs have urinated.
Mow high to help in concealing the dog pee spots of brown or dead grass. Raising the mower blade to 2 to 3 inches will help the grass to combat well excess nitrogen and salts from pet urine and other stressors. The healthy surrounding grass are likely to fill in the dead spots without even reseeding.
How to Prevent Dog Urine Spots on Lawn
There are a number of things you can do to protect your lawn grass from dog urine effects.
- Train your pet to pee at a specific area in the yard. Such non-turf area may be covered with mulch or gravel. You may also select a hidden place on the lawn where you can be pouring water to minimize the damage.
- Give the dog plenty of water to help in diluting urine and its components. This will result to less urine damage on the lawn.
- Have your pet checked by a vet to determine if you can use any supplements into the diet for more water intake for less lethal urine. Be careful not to give your pet ingredients that may cause health complications.
Does grass recover from dog urine?
Sometimes the turf in the affected spots may be brown and not dead. The grass can recover with increased watering. If you don’t see any change, it is possible that the grass has died and you have to re-sod the spot with new grass.
It is almost impossible to bring back to life dead grass killed by dog urine. The best thing to do is to repair the dog urine spots by removing the dead turf including soil underneath. Re-sod or reseeding with the recommended turf-type grass.
While carrying out lawn repairs, remember to keep your canine friend away from the area where you have grown the new grass until it has fully germinated and grown. The best time to release your pet back on a repaired lawn is after the grass has grown and mowed at least three times.
Will baking soda neutralize dog urine on grass?
Baking soda (sodium bicarbonate) is a salt and applying it on the already urine stressed grass will automatically cause more damages. Lawn grasses turn yellow or brown in response to nitrogen and salts in dog’s urine. Using baking soda will not neutralize the urine components but rather kill your grass.
Dog urine spots on grass can only be treated with water. There is no known cure or product that effectively prevent or neutralize dog urine on lawns. Additionally, training your pet on toilet manners can help you have a good relationship with your canine as well as have a green lush lawn without using unorthodox means.