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Protect Your Plants: Effective Strategies to Stop Dogs from Eating Them

March 15, 2024 0 comments

Are your beloved houseplants falling victim to your dog's curious teeth? It's disheartening, isn't it? Not only have you invested considerable effort, money, and time in nurturing your greenery, but some plants can also be hazardous and toxic to dogs. This serves as a compelling reason to break your pet's habit of munching on plants – it's not just about maintaining home aesthetics but also ensuring the health and safety of your puppy.

Here's a rundown of some of the most perilous plants, whether indoors or outdoors, that should be kept out of reach of your furry companions:

  • Sago Palm
  • Lilies and Tulips
  • Azaleas and Rhododendrons
  • Dieffenbachia
  • Oleander
  • Philodendron
  • Autumn Crocus

Take a thorough look at your window sills and flower beds, and familiarize yourself with the names and appearances of these plants for future reference. Now, let's delve deeper into effective strategies on how to keep dogs from eating plants.

Why Do Dogs Eat Houseplants?

Ever wonder why your pet has a penchant for chowing down on your indoor greenery? It turns out, there are a few reasons behind this curious behavior:

  1. Curiosity: Dogs are naturally curious creatures, and exploring new scents and textures is part of their nature. Your houseplants might just seem like an intriguing snack to them.
  2. Boredom: Just like humans, dogs can get bored, especially if they're left alone for long periods. Munching on plants might provide them with a bit of entertainment and stimulation.
  3. Nutritional Deficiencies: Sometimes, dogs may eat plants as a way to supplement their diet with nutrients they're lacking. If you notice your pup nibbling on specific types of plants, it could be a sign that they're missing something in their diet.
  4. Attention-Seeking Behavior: Dogs are social animals and may resort to eating plants as a way to get your attention, especially if they feel neglected or under-stimulated.

While it can be frustrating to see your beloved plants become a canine snack, understanding the reasons behind this behavior can help you address it effectively and stop dogs from eating plants.

Utilize Physical Barriers 

One of the most straightforward and effective methods to keep your dog away from your cherished greenery is by implementing physical barriers.

Picture this: 

  • sturdy fencing,
  • elegant plant cages, 
  • even strategically placed rocks or barriers. 

These simple yet powerful obstacles can create a protective shield around your plants, deterring your dog's access and preserving your garden's beauty.

Whether you're a seasoned gardener or just starting to cultivate your green thumb, physical barriers provide a practical solution to prevent your canine companion from turning your garden into a buffet. So, invest in these barriers today and enjoy a garden that flourishes without any unwanted interference from your pup.

Ensuring Ample Mental Stimulation

When dogs are bored or lacking mental stimulation, they're more prone to engaging in destructive behaviors, such as nibbling on plants. To prevent this, prioritize activities that keep your dog's mind engaged and their energy directed elsewhere.

In such instances, have a strategy in place: if you notice your dog heading towards the plants, grab their favorite toy—a ball, Frisbee, or any other beloved item—to divert their attention away from the plants.

Additionally, observe your dog's behavior patterns. If you notice a recurring desire to interact with the plants at specific times each day, consider adjusting your daily schedule. Plan active walks or training sessions during these times to keep your dog occupied and less fixated on plant-chewing. This proactive approach helps channel your dog's energy into positive outlets, reducing the likelihood of destructive behavior.

Cultivate Self-Control 

Let's circle back to a fundamental truth: mastering basic commands like "leave it" or "stay" can be a game-changer for dog owners, especially in unexpected scenarios. Picture this: your pup starts showing a keen interest in the world of botany and develops a taste for your indoor greenery. Don't underestimate the importance of instilling these commands right from the get-go of your journey as a dog parent. Success in your dog's ability to heed your commands and respond promptly is key.

In your training arsenal, consider incorporating an e-collar as an additional tool. By integrating this device into your training sessions, you can enhance the effectiveness of your workouts. Pair each command with a gentle stimulation system, like a call or vibration from the collar. With consistent training over time, your dog will learn to associate your commands with the corresponding stimulation, leading to flawless execution of commands. And of course, don't forget to reward your furry friend with a tasty treat after each successful command. 

The Power of Natural Repellents

Plants have their own defense mechanisms, and you can harness them to keep dogs away from your precious garden. From citrus peels to cayenne pepper, garlic, coffee grounds, lavender, rosemary, and beyond, there are plenty of options to sprinkle around your plants and discourage canine visitors. Plus, some swear by vinegar as a deterrent. Experiment with different methods to find what works best for you and your garden.

What to Do If Your Dog Eats a Plant?

Accidents happen, but knowing what to do can make all the difference. If your furry friend decides to snack on a plant, here's what you need to do:

  1. Quickly figure out what plant your dog ate (as we indicated in the introduction to this article, we advise you to go back there and re-read that short list). Knowing the species can help determine the level of toxicity.
  2. Check if the plant is harmful to dogs. 
  3. Reach out to your veterinarian immediately for guidance. They'll advise you on the best course of action based on the plant ingested and your dog's health.
  4. Your vet may recommend inducing vomiting at home or may ask you to bring your pup in for medical treatment. Follow their instructions carefully for the best outcome.

Living with a lively little (or not so little) dog brings a whirlwind of excitement into your life every day. From unexpected antics to heartwarming moments, it's a journey filled with surprises. But that's no reason to shy away from being a dog parent. Instead, it calls for responsibility and being prepared for whatever comes your way, including knowing how to stop dogs eating plants.

Whether it's through books, movies, veterinarian vlogs, or our humble articles offering advice for every scenario, there's always help available. Stay calm and follow expert guidance, especially in emergencies. As a devoted dog parent, we trust that you prioritize your pup's safety and well-being above all else.


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