Dogs and the quest for lawn perfection

Discussion in 'Turf Renovation' started by Redline9k, Jul 28, 2010.

  1. Redline9k

    Redline9k LawnSite Member
    Messages: 17

    A few of my customers have dogs and always complain about the spotting they get from urine. Recently we've had a streak of 90+ degree days that is making these spots burn up much quicker so hence, more concerns.

    99% have no intention of hosing down the spots, or training their dog to go in a single spot only, so im left working on spots each time I go out.

    How do you guys handle existing spots in (mostly) fescue lawns? Are you reseeding with anything specific or just raking in new seed with starter fert and telling them to water well?
  2. Runner

    Runner LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 13,497

    You essentially answered the question yourself...You tell them it's like this...You either have a really nice dog, or a really nice lawn. You can't change physics...If they aren't willing to put a little water down when the dog(s) urinates, what gives you any hint of a thought that they are going to water seed and new grass properly to maintain?
  3. Redline9k

    Redline9k LawnSite Member
    Messages: 17

    well, they pay me to "attempt" to fix it, so i have to give them the benefit if the doubt that they can water it for two or three weeks until it germinates...

    ...then i go fix other spots in their lawn in the meantime...

    Given that though, is there any thing special you guys use when it comes to spot-seeding as far as products go?
  4. bigslick7878

    bigslick7878 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 809

    Piss damages soil, it needs to be turned up or replaced and then seeded.

    Put Penn Mulch on top heavy.

    Tell the customers to get a male dog, I have one and he pisses in the flower beds and along the edges, always in the same place. Either that or On something like the fence not on the lawn.

    I had a female before and she would piss in a 10x10 area, in different spots every time so there were spots all over the place.
  5. ChiTownAmateur

    ChiTownAmateur LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 386

    Simply a case where people incapable of training their dogs correctly (90% of dog owners imo) assume that it is the lawn guy's job to fix ALL of their problems even if they are preventable (say by pouring water over the spots).

    People are lazy, dumb animals, for the most part.
  6. jonthepain

    jonthepain LawnSite Senior Member
    Male, from Raleigh
    Messages: 594

    my (female) dog will only pee in high grass. didn't train her to do that; just got lucky i guess.

    Last edited: Jul 28, 2010
  7. Smallaxe

    Smallaxe LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 10,082

    Been working on that problem for a while now. Irrigation, for a few minutes, every day around noon. The dogs go out at 6 am, and if it gets watered in before 8 hours, you can prevent the spots.
    Also, the sugar/molasses seems to help. Mulch mow only, to build up a nice buffer zone of mulch.

    Most importantly, no N fertilizer, whatsoever. The molasses seems to spread the green color around pretty good, so it doesn't seem spotty this time of year. In the spring it looked a two-tone coloration, but once the soil warmed up, I imagine the microbes started working the excess N, throughout the lawn.
  8. Kiril

    Kiril LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 18,334

    I have noticed that lawns managed with compost that are a bit nitrogen deficient will not burn out with dog pee. Instead you get your typical flush of growth without the burnout. Not to say this will always be the case, but just something I have noticed over the years.
  9. Harley-D

    Harley-D LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 508

    HOLY S&*#!! Good post with a great opinion and no articles to back it up or publications to post!! Kiril, are you feeling ok? Nevermind, we will take what we can get. I'm sure there is some scientific evidence that could be traced and calculated but i'm glad you have a good opinion and i, and everyone else should, recognize and give you kudos!!!!
  10. Kiril

    Kiril LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 18,334

    I am happy to see you can recognize a presentation of an opinion vs. an opinion presented as fact. If you need scientific documentation, I could probably find something that addresses a soils ability to buffer nitrogen inputs based on current N status and physical properties of the soil.

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