When you get new artificial turf, there’s a bit of a transition. The urge to water, mow, or perform other upkeep will take a bit to fade away. You’ll also have to adjust to having beautiful greenery throughout the year. More importantly, any outdoor pets you have will also need to adjust. Some dogs take to artificial turf right away. Others need some time to acclimate to the foreign substance in their life.
Perhaps the biggest challenge is when the dog chews on the turf. While the turf is strong, this behavior can eventually cause damage. Also, artificial turf is not dog food, so you don’t want them to actually eat it. That’s why we’ve listed these tips to help you stop your dog from eating the artificial grass.
Traditional Dog Training
The best way to address a dog behavior that you don’t like is with traditional training. In this case, you have to spend time with them around the turf in order to teach them that eating it is bad.
Go outside with your dog and reprimand them when they chew on the turf. Also, reward them when they behave properly. If you can communicate clearly and treat them with consistency, the dog will learn and stop chewing on the turf.
Contain the Issue
Typically, when you use dog training techniques to combat canine chewing habits, you separate the dog from the items they chew. Close the closet or bathroom door. Baby gate the kitchen. Kennel the dog when you aren’t home. You get the idea.
When it comes to artificial grass, containment isn’t always easy. You can fence off the grass if you really want, but if you’re looking for something simpler, you have to get a little creative. Try taking your dog for walks in the backyard. This allows you to introduce them to the turf while on a leash. Ultimately, you want your dog to be able to enjoy the yard without supervision, but accompanying them and turning backyard time into walks is a great way to get a little more control over the situation to help train them.
Once the training sticks, then they should be fine with the turf on their own.
Provide Alternative Chewing
There are two reasons dogs chew on grass blades. One is because they have a digestion issue. Vets and researchers still disagree on what dogs accomplish with this behavior, but it seems to be a normal response to digestive distress.
The other reason is that they are just looking for something to chew. This can be a form of stress relief, a fun way to deal with boredom, or a number of other behaviors. Basically, many dogs like chewing, and grass is a viable object. When your dog’s chewing ambition targets the turf, give them something better to chew on. You can experiment with different toys. Some dogs will even prefer a used sock that you wore over anything else. When you find something better for them to chew, they’ll leave the turf alone.
If the turf chewing is related to digestion, you can plant a small section of real plants that they can chew instead. Or you can focus on their diet to try to resolve chronic problems.
Check the Diet
Aside from indigestion, some dogs will chew on just about anything if they’re hungry. Dogs don’t really get nutrition from grass, and considering their sense of smell, very few dogs are going to confuse turf with the real thing. Still, they’ll chew on whatever they can find in order to process lasting hunger.
Now, there are plenty of adorable dogs out there who need a bit of calorie restriction in order to stay healthy. That can make this situation tricky. But if your dog can safely consume more food, it might provide a solution to this issue.
Wear Them Out
Chewing is frequently a way for a dog to deal with boredom. With more exercise and stimulation, your dog will be too tired to chew on your turf or anything else. A whole lot of playing, walking, running, and petting can go a long way. Of course, many dogs will develop more stamina when you increase their exercise. This might cause trouble as you have to match their new energy level, but ultimately, it will level off.
The good news is that you get to spend lots of time with your dog, and it will be as good for you as it is for them.
Then again, all of this only matters after you have the artificial turf that you want. For that, you need LawnPop. We’ll discuss your lawn situation and help you find a turf solution that has everything you want. We will install the turf professionally, and then your biggest backyard concern will be how to have more fun with your favorite pet. We also offer turf rentals for special events, and offer commercial and putting green turf installation. Give us a call today!