How to Pet Proof your Backyard

Follow these expert tips to ensure the safety of your furry friends at home.

As a pet owner, it's important to ensure your yard is safe and secure. This is essential for the safety of your pets, both in preventing them from escaping, and preventing strays from accessing the yard.

Securing your fence

Dogs are crafty little creatures, they seem to always find a way to either escape or injure themselves. Whether that be digging themselves under the fence, jumping over the fence, or in some cases literally going straight through the fence.

So, in securing your yard, the first step involves taking a walk along the perimeter of your fence, and fixing any potential breaches to the security of your fence.

• If there are any holes in the fence, patch them up.

• If your dog is a furry Einstein and has managed to work out how to open the latch, fix it, replace it, or add another level of security.

• If your dog digs, place cement blocks below the fence or run chicken wire a couple of feet underground. Always try to make sure there is some ground available inside the yard for your dog to dig.

• If your dog or cat is a jumper, ensure there are no objects near the fence that your pet could use as a launch platform. If the problem persists, either place an inward extension at the top of the fence with chicken wire, or as a last resort you could place an electric wire along the top of the fence. Obviously it would be ideal to avoid having to go down this path.

Keeping your pets occupied

If your pet is occupied and doesn't become bored, they are less inclined to try to escape. Lots of treats, toys, affection, exercise and attention will control the escapist behaviour.

If after all of this, you still find that your dog or cat is escaping, it’s probably worth seeking the guidance of a behavioural specialist and possibly considering building a small circular enclosure in the yard which can be used to securely keep your animals safe while you are away.

Dr Ben Willcocks is a Veterinarian, and a regular contributor to the pet website, This site is a free online resource and community developed by Veterinarians to provide current, reliable and relevant information for pet owners.

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Hi, Just wondering if you know anything about temporary indoor fencing for dogs?