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Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Follow Your Dog with a Bucket of Water

Q. I have two large dogs that use my backyard as their bathroom. They cause yellow spots that turn completely bare and kill the grass. Are there any grasses resistant to animal urine?
Dog urine damage to a lawn is usually surrounded with grass which is darker green and taller because of the diluted urea fertilizer contained in urine

A. There are no lawn grasses totally resistant to dog urine. The high concentration of "salts" in the urine is causing the damage.
These salts are actually "fertilizer" salts, not bad salts such as table salt. There is just too much of it. The salts are so concentrated that the grass is burned or killed in a 6 to 8-inch spot.
If you look closely at "dog damage" to a lawn, it looks very different from brown spots caused by diseases or insects. Insect and disease damage does not cause the grass to become dark green or grow faster around the edge of the damage. Dog urine does!
Salts from the urine become diluted in the soil further from the “point of impact”. Once diluted enough, salts from the urine act as a fertilizer and turn the grass dark green and push new growth.
The key to decreasing urine damage is the same as too much applied fertilizer. Dilution. Drenching the spot with water and diluting the salts is the simplest way to decrease damage to the lawn.
I know this might be a hassle and look a little odd to your neighbors but if you follow the dog around with a bucket of water and dump it on the urine spot immediately after it is done, you have a good chance of reducing or preventing damage.

Now, if you could just train your dogs to do it evenly over the lawn and turn on the sprinklers.


  1. Hi there Robert

    Have you heard of Dog Rocks, they stop the urine burning the grass. Just saw your question and answer piece.
    Please let me know if you would like samples?

    Very best wishes

    Carina Evans[linkedin.com]
    CEO Dog Rocks USA LLC & Dog Rocks UK Distribution Ltd

  2. Hi Carina
    Thanks for contacting me. Why the mixed reviews on Amazon and elsewhere?

    I would like to understand the scientific reason why it works. That helps my readers understand the “why” of something and not just that something works.

    I will tell you what I will do. If you want to send me samples I will get it in the hands of the person who wrote the question and let him test them. It will be at the beginning of summer when temperatures are rising. I will put the results on my blog. Sink or swim?

  3. Hi Robert

    Mixed reviews yes because it works in 8 out of 10 cases.
    On top of that in a lot of cases, people fail to read instructions and only put the Rocks in one water bowl (all have to be treated). There are many reasons why Dog Rocks will not work for individuals but even more instances where they do. I hope our website will throw some light on this – www.dogrocks.co.uk[dogrocks.co.uk]

    I would LOVE for your questioner to trial the product. Could you please put us in touch?
    Very best wishes


  4. Carina
    I sent this person an email. He must approve the release of his contact information for me to give it to you. If he approves I will send you his email address. If this is to be evaluated under my watchful eye and the results posted on my blog, I must be in the loop on this. Wish you all the best!

  5. Superduper!
    Please keep me posted?
    Very best wishes

  6. Approved! Keep watching these posts for updated results. I told this person to begin using it at the beginning of summer or late spring. When it gets hot will be a true test whether this product works!!!!

  7. When I started here on the ranch we had 2 big dogs but no yellow spots. All of a sudden we started seeing multiple urine spots all over the property. We realized that in our attempt to decrease water usage we had changed the sprinkler schedule and they were no longer coming on at the appropriate urinating time :P We added a couple minutes of watering around 11am to the dogs' favorite pee spots and haven't had any issues since. (Following 2 dogs around 14 acres with a bucket is pretty impossible!)