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Grazing Animals

two guinea pigs and two rabbits sharing a bowl of food

Rabbits, Tortoises, Guinea Pigs, Sheep, Goats and Chickens fall under the category of grazing animals, we can apply the same rule of thumb for all of them.

These creatures share the same characteristics when it comes to their grazing habits. Typically when grazing animals are kept as pets they are contained within an area of grass and stopped from wandering about willy-nilly. As a result, any damage to your lawn caused by their urine, droppings, munching or scratching will be confined to a small area which can be dealt with once you have moved the enclosure on to its next location.   

What is the worst that will happen?

If you plan to keep your pets in a section of the lawn, you can expect that area of the lawn to be at a far worse standard compared to the rest. Reasons behind this include eating habits of the animals, as we all know grazing animals love to eat grass, the bright side is you will never have to mow that specific area.

As you are likely to provide water for your pets, you can expect they will be needing to use the bathroom and with that in mind, expect there to be a large concentration of urine within the containment area.  The concentration will start to deteriorate your lawn and create dead patches.

The Solution

The area your pets will be kept will take a bit of a beating, but fear not below are a couple of tips to ensure your lawn looks great.

First things first, Move

Now we don’t mean move house, simply move the area the pets are kept to ensure there isn’t too much wear and tear in a single area. Aim to move your little ones at least once or twice a week but really the more the better.

Watering the area

Once you have moved your pets to a new area, we suggest watering down where they were previously kept. This will dilute the concentration of urine.

Repairing dead patches:

Dead patches appearing can be quite a burden to see on your lawn, we recommend the following to help assist recovery:

  • Try to remove the dead area through forcefully raking the area.
  • We then need to create a tilth by .. up the area of the patch, if needs be you can also add some top dressing
  • Spread lawn seed over the area.
  • Ensure the seed has enough soil contact.
  •  Once all the above is done to ensure you are watering at least twice a day to help with germination.

The dilution method of control can be problematical and, even if you are very diligent, you will at some point notice dead patches in your lawn.

The dilution of urine can be problematic at times, even if you are diligent, you may still notice dead patches in your lawn.

Lawn treatments and pet safety:

Fertiliser:

This product is applied in granular form and is a semi-organic product which poses no risks to pets or wildlife.

Moss Treatment:

A liquid form treatment that is iron-based. Whilst there is no risks to dogs and cats we advice you keep them off for at least a day which will allow the product to dry. As for Grazing animals, they must be kept off for at least three weeks.

Herbicide:

Similar to the moss treatment, the herbicide is applied through a sprayer and is in liquid form. Dog and cats should be kept off the lawn for at least a day or when the product has dried. For grazing animals such as rabbits, they must be kept off for at least two weeks or until the weeds become unedible.

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