Spring is in the air and the sun is making its long-awaited return after a seemingly endless winter. This means that we, and our pets, will be spending more time enjoying the outdoors to unthaw and soak up some rays. And while our animals enjoy being outside, not all yard spaces are well set up to accommodate them and their needs. This season, why not make one of your outdoor projects creating a pet garden? In essence, this means choosing plants and deciding on the layout while keeping your menagerie in mind. This way, both animals and humans will get optimal enjoyment from this space. Here’s how it’s done right.

The Foundations

If you are creating a garden from scratch, you are in a position to choose what you want for your garden bed.
Grass is an option, but lawns are notoriously hard to maintain in drier parts of the country. Some pets are also
guilty of inadvertently causing damage, such as digging or bleaching and killing the grass by peeing on it.

Another option that is becoming increasingly popular is artificial grass. While some can become smelly, such as
astroturf finishes, these days there are ones designed with animals and children in mind that are easy to clean and care for. Artificial grass also ensures that your garden will look green throughout the year – and there’s no watering and weeding required!

An alternative to grass that many people opt for is paving. This can be conventional brick or stone or pebbles.

If you are going to create a pet-friendly space, don’t use loose chips and pips as these can be a choking hazard. Better safe than sorry!

Dog in garden

Photo: Pexels

Read more: How to create a pet-friendly garden

The Foliage

The next step in planning a pet garden is choosing plants that you and your furry friends can enjoy. This means looking for plants that are not just aesthetically pleasing to you but are safe if your animals chomp on them.

Some popular options:

  • Sage
  • Fennel
  • Rosemary
  • Nasturtiums
  • Snapdragons
  • Roses
  • Dill
cat in garden

Photo: Pexels

Finishing Touches

Gardens aren’t just for plants, they are also entertainment areas for you and your furry friends. This means that, when creating a garden with your pets in mind, think of extra things you can add so you can all make the most of
your outdoor space. If you don’t have trees or structures that provide you with spring- and summertime shade, think about installing a tarp or canopy so that you have somewhere outdoors to relax that isn’t in the blazing sun.

Another way to keep pets entertained is to add a water feature or a small pool to fill with water so they can cool down.



4 Stunning Houseplants Safe For Dogs

A version of this article was originally published in the Garden&Home September 2022 printed magazine

Feature image: Pexels