Grass where dog has urinated - Knowledgebase Question

cincinnati, Oh
Avatar for sandyc9
Question by sandyc9
August 11, 2010
What can we use to restore grass where a dog has urincated and turned it brown. What to use this fall and winter to help with this. Thanks

Answer from NGA
August 11, 2010
The first step in repairing the dog spot damage is to flush the area with water. This will dilute the nitrate concentration and leaches the nitrates below the root level of the grass. If you do not see green grass shoots emerging in the brown areas in a week or so after flushing the area, you can assume that the roots are dead and the grass will have to be replaced.

If your lawn is otherwise healthy, small spots will repair themselves as the surrounding grasses spread back into the dead areas. Larger spots, however, are likely to fill with weeds before the surrounding grasses can cover the spot. These need a more aggressive approach to repair. Begin by removing a shovel full or two of the soil from the dead patches and replace it with soil from your garden or another source. Sprinkle some grass seed on the soil and keep the area well watered. For more immediate repair, dig out the dead spots and replace them with sod patches you have removed from a less conspicuous area of the lawn or sod that you have purchased.

Gypsum is often recommended to prevent urine damage. But instead of just sprinkling it over the brown spots, it must be mixed into the soil. You can try adding lime to the soil as you dig out the damaged spots. It may have some long term benefits and certainly won't hurt your lawn. Keep hosing the lawn down after the fact - thorough flushing with water is the most effective means of reducing the damage potential of dog urine.

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