HGTV Message Boards
Dog proof back yard

This topic can be found at:

Jan 27, 2013, 01:12 PM
Dog proof back yard
we live in Oregon and have a mess for a backyard. We are looking for design ideas. We have a large sloped hill and a flatter area. The flatter area use to have grass but the snow and dogs have torn it up and it is now mud. The entire hill is dirt also. The amount of dust in my house in the summer is horrendous. We also have a very large deck. We are hoping to dog proof the backyard so they can run and play frisbee as well as having it being eye appealing when we sit on the deck and have friends over.
Jan 28, 2013, 09:47 PM
Florida Farm Girl
Welcome, Machuca. I can't offer any suggestions for the yard, but I hope someone will be along soon who may be able to help.

Life isn't about how to survive the storm, but how to dance in the rain.
Jan 30, 2013, 02:44 PM
I would suggest that you contact your local county extension service office. They might have some suggestions that will work for your area.

"The soil is the source of life, creativity, culture and real independence." David Ben-Gurion
Feb 03, 2013, 11:27 PM
I have the same problem. Slopped yard, been trying to grow grass but over the winter there is a lot of mud and the dogs trek it in all over the house. First solution is to grow grass although that can be challenging with a sloppy yard, especially with dogs. Buy a good pet vacuum. This is going to sound basic but it really helped us maintain the house cleaning. We bought a Hoover Pet vacuum and amazed at what a difference the right vacuum can make. I spend 50% less time vacuuming our hardwood floors and carpet. We paid $150 at Amazon.

Hope this helps

Good Luck

This message has been edited. Last edited by: seedman,
Feb 10, 2013, 08:00 AM
Kosh III
I can't advise about the yard but here's something I do with my Lab puppy

I keep an old towel by the backdoor and she has learned to sit as soon as she come in the door. Then I wipe her feet well to get off the mud and stuff. I do this even when it's dry so that she will learn this routine well. So far she does fine.

Apr 07, 2013, 10:25 AM
I can so relate. Dogs really want to walk their perimeter. So they will plow right through whatever you plant next to the fence. We have just embraced that and forged ahead. Everything we plant has survived except for mini yew. A sloped yard requires a long term solution. I would consider changing it to staggered terraces resembling large steps. Using railroad beams and new sod, you can basically redesign the backyard to be more functional. If mudslides are an issue in your area, this might help. Seek out professional knowledge before you begin. And keep it very simple and low maintenance.

Our dogs have always worn a path in the yard, it even shows up on google maps!
Apr 08, 2013, 06:35 PM
You've got a dog--with all what that infers.
Large dogs can do major damage to lawns and being sloped, with drainage being a major handicap, a dog can do pretty well what they will do...tear it up.
There is practically nothing you can do to prevent it happening except keeping the dog out of an area while you do something to dog proof it.
You might consider using white clover---it grows, like a weed, (needs a weed killer to kill it) but it stand up to wear and tear, dog urine and needs no fertilizer.
It doesn't need nearly as much care--such as mowing but it can cause increased use of the clothes washer---stains are more pronounced.

If you can keep the dog out of an area while you grow such cover, then let it romp while you do the other areas you might get ahead of the dog. Otherwise, enjoy your pet and toss up your hands about the grounds.