Pet Proofing Your Yard

Outdoor Dog - Lucy YoungIt's that time of year where weekend BBQ's and family backyard gatherings are in abundance. The sun is shining, the flowers are blooming, the ants are biting, and your pets are enjoying every minute of their outdoor time. It's very important to remember that your dogs are smarter then we sometimes give them credit for... if they feel the need to escape... odds are they will figure out a way to experience the freedom of the streets.

Here are a few tips:

* Check your gate often to insure that there is a strong latch on the gate. It is most common for your dog to escape out of an open gate. Make sure your latch secures easily and stays in place

* Check for gaps in the gate and along the fence between the slats. If there is enough room for your dog to escape between the slats, make sure to add a piece of wood to cover the area.

* If your dog is a digger, consider placing cement blocks or extending chicken wire from the bottom of the fence to a few feet underground.

* A "Keep Gate Closed" sign is an excellent idea for those of you that have frequent family and friends gatherings or a lawn service. These signs can be found at the local hardware.

* Be extra careful about what is placed near fences. Chairs and tables make great launching pads.

Often a dog will try and escape out of boredom. If you leave you dog in the yard during the day while away from work consider leaving extra chew toys and other fun distractions around the yard. If you have a a dog that digs, you can consider building sand type box with loose soil for playtime. This will give your dog a place to extend his urge to dig.

Last but not least...

REMEMBER TO KEEP CURRENT TAGS ON YOUR DOGS COLLAR. Tags can be found at your local pet store and they will provide you an opportunity to note your address or phone numbers. Should your dog escape, tags are the key to a quick return.