There are different species, and hence, they may look different from each other. Nonetheless, they are similar in terms of how they can be damaging for the garden. They are same to humans, in the sense that they also have a nervous system, circulatory system, and digestive tract, among others. Both dogs and cats also have five senses, although they use it in a different way compared to humans.
Dog’s and Cat’s Habitat
Dogs and cats can live at homes and they coexist with humans. Cats are highly adaptable, and hence, they can live in a variety of environments. You can find them in the driest deserts or the highest mountains. A lot of dogs and cats are also feral, which means that they live in the wild. Some of their habitats include wetlands, agricultural lands, grasslands, tundra, forests, and coastal areas, among others.
Identifying Dog’s and Cat’s Damage
The problem with cats and dogs is that they can damage almost any plant that you have in the garden, especially those that are young and soft. They affect fruits, vegetables, and flowers, among others. However, it is also important to note that there are plants that are poisonous to cats and dogs. Stay away from these plants as they can kill your pets. Some of the specific examples of these plants include true lilies, azalea, castor bean plant, daffodils, sago palm, tulips, and hyacinths, among others.
The following are some of the signs that dogs and cats are negatively affecting plants in the garden:
- One of the most common signs would be having holes in the yard. Especially for dogs, they tend to be hyperactive. When you are not looking or when they do not have a toy to play with, they may end up digging the soil, and hence, making the lawn unattractive.
- You will also notice that the edges of the plants will seem like they have been gnawed. The chewing of dogs and cats can cause an unappealing appearance of the different parts of the plants, such as its leaves and fruits.
- Wilting of the leaves, which can lead to the eventual death of the plant, is another common symptom. This is a result of pet urine. The latter contains urea and alkaline salts. They will alter the acidity of the soil, and hence, will negatively affect the growth of the plant.
Results of Infestations
Dogs and cats can affect plants in many ways. In most cases, they can unearth plants. They will dig in the ground and destroy the plant even before it fully grows. Their urine can also affect the overall growth of the plants. While they are not too much of a problem in commercial growers, in the garden, when the pets are unattended, their infestation can be frustrating. This is especially because you treat them as friendly pets and you do not expect that they will wreak havoc in the yard.
How to Get Rid of Dogs and Cats
Natural and Organic Solutions
If your dogs and cats are causing damages to your plants in the garden, the following are some of the best things to do:
- One of the best things that you can do is to give dogs and cats a dedicated place at home. In the yard, it will also be good if they have their own play area. In line with this, proper training is also essential to keep them away from your plants.
- Fencing is another technique that will work, especially if your main concern is stray dogs and cats or those from your neighbor. Fences will clearly define your territory to keep them away. For flowerbeds, build a fence so that your pets won’t go nearby.
- There are also natural repellents that can prove to be promising in deterring the presence of cats and dogs. One of the best examples of this is pepper. You can grind different types of pepper. After this, spread it around the garden, concentrating on the area that cats and dogs frequent the most. It has a strong scent that they will hate.
- If you are looking for another option for natural repellents, coffee grounds will also deliver a high level of effectiveness. You can mix it with orange peels. Not only that it will deter pets from the plants, it can also be a good choice for a fertilizer.
- Vinegar is equally promising. It has a strong scent, which remains even after drying. Soak the stakes in vinegar before placing them near the plants. Re-soak them at least once every week.
- There are also commercial repellents that are available in the market. One of the perfect examples of the products that can work is Shake-Away. The latter smells like urine, which will keep animals away from your plants. The label states that the product is organic, which means that you do not have to think about the possibility that it will be toxic.
- It will also be good to consider the plants that you grow in the garden. Consider planting those with an odor that can naturally repel pets. In the case of cats, for instance, they hate lavender, rue, and pennyroyal, among others. Growing catnip will also work in luring felines and keeping them out of your garden plants.
Stay away from the use of chemicals and poisons for dogs. They are inhumane. For sure, a lot of pet owners will reject the idea of using chemical control just to make sure that dogs and cats will not harm the garden in any way. Keep your house clear from different items that contain toxic chemicals that can harm your pets.