Dogs in the garden

by Adam Pasco

Do dogs and gardening mix? I'd have to say yes, despite the state of my lawn!

Miniature poodle on a lawnDo dogs and gardening mix? I'd have to say yes, despite the state of my lawn! Magic, our miniature poodle, is a great companion, offering the unconditional love only dogs can give. She's most often observed at this time of year belly-up on the lawn, soaking up the sun. What a life.

When it comes to gardening, her first love is watering, as previously described in this blog. It's hard getting through an evening of watering over summer without Magic getting involved (and soaked during the process).

But a dog must earn its keep, and Magic plays a useful role in pest control. In the past she's played a part in deterring squirrels from ravaging the peanut feeders, but more recently I've been bothered by woodpigeons that have taken up residence. Every time I look down the garden, a woodpigeon is pecking away at the lawn. To be honest I'm not sure what it's eating, but it could be the clover (does anyone know if pigeons eat clover?).

Now this on its own wouldn't really be a problem, but these big fat pigeons leave their own deposits in their wake, and the lawn is getting into quite a state. At a time of year when the family enjoy stretching out on the grass, it's creating a clear-up job before we can even venture out.

Magic to the rescue! She watches through the glazed back door for the first signs of pigeon activity, then gets our attention. As we open the door, Magic bolts past to scatter the pigeons back into surrounding trees. No risk of catching them, I'm afraid, but is does curtail their feeding, along with 'other' activities.

The problem is, as soon as Magic returns inside and the door is closed, our unwanted visitors return too. My pigeon vigil continues.

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Talkback: Dogs in the garden
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Gardeners' World Web User 22/06/2009 at 14:07

i to have a toy poodle and he is a great joy to have around,every morning after coming in from our morning walk i go out to feed the birds,of course ollie in toe barking his head of at the many many wood pigeons,squirells and magpies,it seems the little birds dont bother him or jays.he will not let me put bread out as i drop it on the lawn hes behind me hoovering it up.the poo poo is a problem from the birds though.

Gardeners' World Web User 23/06/2009 at 09:35

One's own dog no doubt is welcome but I don't have one and the neighbours' dogs seem to think my garden is preferable to their own as a toilet. i have just acquired a prickly Hakea to plant!

Gardeners' World Web User 23/06/2009 at 12:58

I have an Australian Terrier and he is great at chasing off visitors like pigeons and squirrels. He has also ridded me from rats from the bird feeders in winter. Any bread that falls from the bird table is fair game to him as far as he is concerned and is quickly woofed down even if it is stale.

Gardeners' World Web User 24/06/2009 at 22:50

can anyone help me I have trouble whith my dogs i love them to piece's but they eat my plant,s i have no grass in my garden as i have four dogs and it is not practical i am slowly going mad i have flower beds down the side and pot plant around the garden i also love the birds and feed them and have four cat which i love and would not be whith out one is sitting on my lap as i write this blog. please help many than

Gardeners' World Web User 25/06/2009 at 13:47

Can anyone please tell me how to rid my garden of moles. We have tried every available method on the market and some unconventional methods, but with no success. We are plagued by mole hills every morning, which we clear and use the soil elsewhere but they just come back again during the day. Our two dogs think it's a great game to pounce and dig down into the mole tunnels. Our beautiful lawn is now a mess - please help!

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