Let’s not beat around the bush… We all love our dogs but they don’t half make a mess of our lawns! If you have a lovely green lawn covered in unsightly brown patches you will be wondering if there is a one-stop solution and hoping there is a magic lawn fertiliser for dog urine patches that will keep your lawn looking great.
Some quick facts about lawns and dog wee
- The brown patches on the lawn are caused by high nitrogen content in the dog’s pee.
- Both male and female dogs will make brown patches on the lawn but because male dogs generally lift their legs on objects, it’s not as noticeable.
- Changing the acidity of dog urine by feeding them different foods will not make much difference to the nitrogen in their pee.
- Big dogs will burn larger areas of grass!
- Baking soda does not neutralise dog pee in the grass.
Is there a lawn fertiliser for dog urine patches?
The brown patches on lawns caused by dog urine are due to the high nitrogen content in a dog’s pee. Unfortunately, although lawns love nitrogen, it is of a higher dose than the grass can cope with. Consequently, the grass shrivels up and turns brown. Very similar to, if you had accidentally tipped too much lawn fertilizer in one spot and burnt the grass.
You will notice that the grass grows very thick and green around the edge of the patch. This is because the nitrogen is not quite as concentrated as it dissipates through the soil. Once the brown patch of dog urine has been diluted over a few weeks, the grass grows very strong and green as the nitrogen reaches a level the grass can cope with.
So to answer the question… adding more fertiliser to the lawn will only add more nitrogen to the soil and won’t remove the brown patch of dead grass. That said, because the brown patches caused by dog urine are made more prominent by the dark thick grass around the edge of the patch, adding a lawn fertilizer will start to disguise the brown patches by making the lawn a more even green colour all over.
Are lawn fertilisers dog friendly?
The majority of readily available fertilisers suggest that, once the fertiliser has been watered in and the grass is dry, it is safe for your pet to roam free on the lawn. Always check the label before applying fertiliser to ensure it is pet friendly.
Seaweed extract fertilisers are often organic and very pet friendly. They are applied by spraying the grass, so no waiting for granules to dissolve and wash into the soil. Again, always check the label to ensure there are no additional ingredients that may harm your pet.
How to neutalise dog urine on grass
Now we have established that excess nitrogen in dog wee causes the brown patches and that applying a lawn fertiliser will make the brown patches less prominent. We can now look at treating the brown patches or more importantly try to stop the brown patches developing!
There are a few great probiotic products on the market that contain hundreds of bacteria. These microbes break down the nitrogen in the soil before it starts to kill the grass. Neuturine by envii and Pee-Fix by Credwell are two very effective products.
How do dog urine neutralisers work?
There are many products that can be placed in the dogs drinking water which can help to reduce the amount of nitrogen produced in the dogs wee. This does seem a little unfair on the dog!
Neuturine and Pee-Fix produce a water dissolvable granule which can be watered on the area where the dog pees, neutralising the area before the nitrogen has a chance to kill the grass. The microbes even hang around in the soil ready to neutralise any excess nitrogen coming their way.
The good news is that you don’t have to go running around after your dog with a watering can every time she goes out for a wee!
Many pets have an area they like to use, so if you are lucky, the wee patches will be concentrated in one area. However, you may have to treat the whole lawn if your dog likes to give you the runaround!
Repairing dog wee patches in your lawn
Unfortunately, these microbes don’t come with a magic wand. If your grass has completely turned brown, it will recover eventually. However, you may want to repair the patches by resowing the patches with some grass seed. Scratch the surface of the soil to remove the dead grass and scatter some grass seed over the area.
Perfect Garden Tip:
- Mix the grass seed with some potting compost before spreading by hand. This will really help the grass seed to germinate. Keep the area damp but don’t overwater and risk washing the grass seed away.
- There are some great all in one grass patch repair products available. Containing everything you need to repair brown patches in your lawn if you want an easy repair straight out of the bottle.