How to keep dogs out of flower beds and gardens

Updated February 21, 2017

Dogs wreak havoc in flower beds and gardens by damaging the flowers that were once a gardener's pride and joy and leaving a trampled mess. Canines view flower beds as an opportunity to dig. Whether your dog digs out of boredom or to expose cool soil for relief from a hot summer's day, stop it immediately before it becomes a habit that is hard to break. Besides training your dog, you can erect barriers and apply repellents to keep your garden and flower beds safe.

Walk your dog frequently during the day to expend its energy or direct it elsewhere. Some dogs are more energetic than others and consider digging a form of play. Consider a few short strolls throughout the day instead of one long walk. Take a ball or throwing disc along so your canine jumps around and exerts itself.

Fence your garden to create a physical barrier between your dog and the flowers. Depending on personal taste and allocated budget, install wire, mesh or wood fencing that prohibits access to the garden. Keep it 5 to 6 feet high, with its bottom end buried in the soil to prevent the dog from digging and sliding under.

Install a motion-activated sound, sprinkler or light system. These easy-to-install systems startle and drive away your dog with sudden light, sound or activity. Startling the dog with a light spray of water from a hose also can discourage it from going near the flower bed or garden.

Install an invisible fence around the perimeter of your flower garden and a special collar around your dog's neck. Every time your canine attempts to go near the garden, the underground sensors in the fence send a signal to the sensors in the collar that gives the dog a mild shock. This teaches the dog not to go toward the flowers.

Spray cumin and crushed red pepper throughout the garden, or spray flowers with a mixture of cayenne pepper and alcohol. The mixture causes the canine to sneeze, which discourages it from going into the garden.

Plant cactus, thorny roses or other plants with thorns around the edges of your flower bed or areas you want the dog to stop visiting. Crossing the sharp barrier once will teach the dog not to go over it again.

Create a digging pit where your dog can divert its energy. Dig a trench in a corner of your yard and line it with sand that assists in drainage. Place a few of your pet's favourite toys there to encourage it to play, roll, jump and dig. Hide some toys under the pit's dirt and give the dog a treat every time it finds them.

Things You'll Need

  • Fencing
  • Cumin
  • Cayenne pepper
  • Alcohol
  • Spray bottle
  • Cactus and roses
  • Shovel
  • Sand
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About the Author

Tanya Khan is a freelance author and consultant, having written numerous articles for various online and print sources. She has a Master of Business Administration in marketing but her passion lies in writing.