We love our dogs!
We love a great
looking lawn as well.
our dog's urine can leave brown or yellow spots on our lawn.
These burnt looking spots are caused by the amount of nitrogen
in our dogs urine. It's natural and normal. It's often said that
only female dogs leave these spots, but it has more to do with
the concentrated squatting position of the female as opposed to
the scattering / ricocheting off objects
action of the male. It goes without saying that the bigger the
dog the more chance of a good sized
The cause of the burning
relates to the amount of nitrogen in your dog's urine. Your lawn
actually loves nitrogen to a certain extent, but high
concentrations of it will burn the grass dead. Lawn fertilizer
has nitrogen in it to help your lawn grow strong and green, but
if you've ever accidentally spilled a small amount of spring
fertilizer on your lawn you will soon see the same result – a
yellowish burn mark.
So what can we do about these
One answer is to dilute
the urine with water right after you see your dog urinate
on the lawn. This is great if you're always out in the yard and
are paying constant attention to what your dog is doing while
Most of us don't watch every move
our dogs make while we're out in the yard with them and will
only notice the spots as they appear.
A great solution:
A fast and easy solution to damaged spots on the lawn has been to use a grass plugger.
This "lawn claw" (below) was purchased at the local hardware store almost three decades ago, it
still does an excellent job at quickly and easily repairing the spots
from the dogs, as well as repairing any other normal wear and
tear areas of the lawn.
With a grass plugger you simply walk up to the dead spot, push
the plugger into the grass and remove a plug. Once the first plug is
removed, you just find a donor area that you can move some
healthy grass plugs from and start transferring the good grass
to the burnt area (and the damaged grass plugs to the good area
if you choose). Give the plugs a shot of water when you're done
- and that's it. A dog urine burn can be repaired in under a
minute if your donor grass is right next to your damaged grass and
there's no waiting for new grass seed to grow, no buying peat moss or top soil to
help grow the seed etc. This is also a great way to replace
weeds with good grass, just un-plug the dandelion, weed, or crack
grass and replace it with a plug of good grass.
The old model referred to here is called a “lawn claw”
they are no longer available. It's basically a pipe about 4 foot long with
a T-handle at the top, 3 blades at the bottom and step at the base to assist when pushing
it into the ground An ejection handle runs down the pipe
to eject the plug in it's new location. It only takes a 1" or 1.5"
wide plug so pushing it into the grass is easier than many larger pluggers. You may be able to find a used one of these or you can search the net for “sod plugger” and find a few
different models to choose from.