Has this happened to you? You just finished your spring landscaping with a fresh layer of mulch. When you let Fido outside, he checks out the new materials and starts munching on a piece…
Is eating mulch ok? In this review, we’re going to examine why dogs eat mulch, the benefits of mulch, and the types of mulch that are dog-safe and the types that are dangerous or poisonous. Then we’ll review 12 products currently on the market to help you find the best mulch for dogs.
Top 12 Mulches for Dogs
Playsafer Rubber Nuggets
International Mulch Company NS8RW Redwood
Thunder Acres Natural Wheat Straw
Cedarcide Insect Repelling Cedar Mulch
Kaytee Pine Bedding for Pet Cages
Understanding Mulch for Dogs
Combining dogs and landscaping material can pose some hazards. If your pup is a munch monster, mulch or other yard improvements might be appealing to him. Why does fido eat mulch, and what can you do to keep your property looking its best while also keeping your furbaby safe? Let’s take a look.
Why Do Dogs Eat Mulch?
Most mulch is made from tree bark, and it has an attractive aroma for canines. Dogs are also natural chewers and some of them like to gnaw on wood. Even though most types of mulch are not poisonous to our furbabies, they still pose a risk for choking or obstructions.
Is mulch safe for dogs?
If your furbaby likes to munch on mulch, you may be better off to avoid using it in your yard. However, Fido may still encounter ground cover on walks. Keep your furbaby on a leash and steer him away from landscaped areas. That being said, some mulches are pet-safe and others may be harmful or toxic. Read on to learn which options are hazardous and which are ok to use in the yard.
Is Dyed Mulch Safe For Dogs?
What Are The Best Types of Mulch to Use With Dogs?
Cedar mulch is considered safe for dogs. It doesn’t have any toxic chemicals but can still pose a risk if your pooch swallows large pieces. As we stated above, cedar also has some insect-repelling properties. This product has a pleasant aroma and attractive natural red color that can pop in your yard.
Another mulch that’s non-toxic and safe for dogs is pine. If your landscaping material includes pine needles, be careful. They can irritate or puncture the stomach if your pal eats them.
Natural woods that haven’t been dyed or treated are also safe for dogs. Even though dyes used today to color mulch aren’t toxic, the chemicals can leach into the soil.
What Should You Avoid?
Cocoa Bean Mulch Can Poison Dogs: Warning! Toxic Mulch for Dogs
One popular type of landscaping material that people like to use is Cocoa Bean Mulch. It has a pleasant aroma and looks attractive in the yard. However, this product contains small amounts of theobromine. This is the compound found in chocolate that’s toxic to dogs. If a pooch eats large amounts of cocoa mulch, they can show signs of chocolate poisoning like:
- Lack of appetite
- Elevated heart rate
- Panting or rapid breathing
- Cherry red gums
It’s best to avoid this type of landscaping. If you have cocoa mulch in your yard and thing Fido may have eaten some, contact your veterinarian immediately.
Another option for flowerbeds and other non-lawn areas is rocks. While most pups find stones unappealing, there are a few canines that will eat them. If your pal swallows a rock, it can cause an obstruction. The material can also dry out the soil and make it harder to maintain plants. If you choose to use stone in some areas of the yard, look for smooth rocks. They’ll be less likely to cut or injure your furbaby’s paws.
What’s the Best Mulch for a Dog Run?
If you’re setting up a dog run and want to line it with mulch, make sure you use a non-toxic material. Rubber mulch is a great option because it won’t blow away, it’s easy to clean, and it’s gentle on the feet. With rubber, you’ll have good drainage and you’ll be able to hose the run down for easy cleaning. If you prefer a natural substance, go with cedar. It provides warmth as bedding and can also help prevent pests.
How to Keep Your Dog From Turning Your Yard Into a Muddy Mess
When you have one or more energetic pooches, grass may not hold up to their activities. So, you may need to find other materials that are safe and practical. If you really want some lawn, section off dog-free areas and keep Fido off. For other parts of the yard, you can use:
- Pea gravel
- Wood chips
- Artificial turf
Before laying out the material, level the ground and cover it with plastic sheeting or landscaping fabric to discourage weeds.