Pet-Safe Gardens: Avoid Toxic Gardening Supplies

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March 19, 2013
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Are you getting your garden ready? Thinking of planting a row of begonias, day lilies, or vegetables? There’s a lot of planning and work that goes into making gardens and yards look great. You also want to make sure that insects and other creatures don’t ruin your garden while also trying to make it safe for your pets and children.

Find the right products to use to make sure it’s pet-safe can be hard. Many things that can help make your yards and gardens look beautiful can be harmful to your cats and dogs.

Here’s 4 garden supplies that are toxic to pets:

  1. Blood meal – this is ground up animal blood. It may be good for growing plants but can be deadly to pets. Ingestion of blood meal can lead to vomiting, diarrhea, and pancreatitis. It can also harm the levels of iron in your pet.
  2. Bone meal – for some animals, bone meal is just as appealing to eat as blood meal. The bone meal, once swallowed, can turn into a hard ball and block the digestive tract. While bone meal can be great for gardens, it can be deadly for pets.
  3. Cocoa mulch – this mulch has a sweet chocolate scent that can attract your dog to taste it. Even though it’s not as harmful as chocolate, it still contains levels of theobromine and caffeine which can cause vomiting and seizures. Instead of using this try cedar or pine chips instead. Also, be aware, that this mulch can mold if it’s in an area that is too moist.
  4. Compost – yum, old food. Your pet may not know it’s discarded and want to munch down on some moldy food. Organic matter that is decomposing can seriously harm your pet. Aside from an upset stomach, your pet could experience hyperthermia due to the mycotoxins which are in moldy organic matter. Keep your compost in an area where animals cannot get to it.

If you are using any of these fertilizers, you may want to think of a way to fence off the area from your pets and children. Many home improvement stores have small fences that are cute to border your garden as well as mesh or wire fencing that could be made into a roof that allows sunshine and water in but keeps your pets out.

Have tips to share? Tell us what you do to keep your gardens pet-safe!

Image from Wallpapers2u.com

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