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With the warm seasons in full swing, it comes as no surprise that gardeners and green thumbs out there are ready to pick their plants. For those who have a furry friend at home, you want to be sure that each and every ingredient to make its way into your garden is safe for your pet, as warmer weather means more time spent outside. Here’s how to make your garden a safer place for your pets.  

Research Pet-Safe Plants
If your pet is a digger, or simply likes to eat anything growing out of the ground, you want to ensure that anything they can get to is non-toxic. Harmful plants, like lilies, tulips and irises, can cause vomiting, drooling and, for those who really like to dig deep, the bulbs of these flowers can even cause kidney failure. Check with your local veterinarian or garden store, or visit the ASPCA website, for a complete list of poisonous plants.

Fence Off Vegetables
For those who like to cultivate their own vegetables and herbs, be sure to put your edible garden behind a fence or in a raised bed, out of reach for your pet. Edible plants, like garlic, chives and even onions, can be harmful to animals. Even tomatoes, a seemingly non-toxic plant for pets, can cause heart failure. Hanging planters is also another great option to keep your fur babies away from danger.

Avoid Cocoa Bean Mulch
When deciding on which type of mulch you want in your garden, consider the damage certain ingredients can cause to your pet. Cocoa bean mulch, much like chocolate, is incredibly dangerous for dogs to ingest. Because of its appealing scent, many animals will be attracted to this sweet choice. However, it can cause seizures, heart failure and even death when ingested. Look for an all natural, pet-safe option at your local garden store.

Keep Pets Away From Fertilizers
If you choose to fertilize your yard, keep your pet inside during this process. Always be sure to read the label and follow precise watering and care instructions. Even organic fertilizers can be hazardous to pets. Ingesting the ingredients, such as blood and fish, or a compost of toxic food like onions and grapes, can cause your pet muscle and joint pain as well as clogging up their gastrointestinal tract. Be sure that when it is time to let them out, the treated area is safe.

Avoid Rodent Poison
Even if your lawn or garden suffer from an infestation of moles or mice, steer clear of any poisonous bates. It will be just as easy for your pet to ingest or inhale these products, as they too are close to the ground and will usually eat anything they can find. Find natural remedies for dealing with rodents. Also be sure to keep your pets out of neighbor’s yards, as you never know what sort of rodent treatment they may be using.

With careful research and a smart gardening plan in place, you can ensure that your pets will stay safe and healthy while enjoying the beauty of a landscaped garden.