Why Does Dog Pee Kill Grass? – An In-Depth Look

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Last Updated on January 18, 2023 by Urska

Have you ever wondered why does dog pee kill grass or what does it contain that makes it so harsh to your green carpet?

Fur friends are fun to have at home and watch them run around your lawn.  Sharing your home with these fun animals is one of the best parts of having a lawn.

Until you notice that, your much-loved dog has been feeding your grass with its urine and causing harm to your carpet of green. You will notice that a patch of grass in your yard is colored yellow and dead or dying. Don’t wonder what solution burned it, the culprit is your or your neighbor’s dog.

We all love our pets, but no one wants their lawn grass destroyed after all the work you put into it.

Why Does Dog Pee Kill Grass?

But why does dog urine burn grass?  Even though a dog is man’s best friend and loves to play on a well-kept lawn as much as you do, their urine wreaks havoc on grass.

Their urine has nitrates that hurt your green grass leaving it burned with bare lawn spots or discolored grass. The urine spots on the lawn happen because of the high amount of nitrogen and salts concentrated in their pee.

Most people have fallen for the lie that female dogs’ urine is what kills grass but the males are guilty too.  Dogs’ urine is the same for all the dogs whether male or female. All dogs, including females, puppies, and some adult males, can burn grass when they urinate in one concentrated area. When this urine is concentrated in a single area, lawn damage happens. It looks a lot like fertilizer burn.

Why Does Dog Pee Kill Grass

Minor lawn urine damage often resolves on its own, as healthy new growth happens on your lawn.  However, areas that contain concentrated urine where your dog frequents urination will require spot care and repair.

Be careful not to fertilize your lawn if it already has elevated levels of nitrates, adding even a little more can kill your grass. Dog urine contains high levels of nitrogen compounds that kill the grass.  Slightly yellow spots can be frustrating and almost impossible to remove without dealing with the source – cos they will still pee.

How Do You Prevent Brown Spots On The Lawn From Dog Urine?

Now that we know your dog is responsible for killing your lawn slowly using its urine, it’s time to counterattack this effect and save your lovely grass.

The best way to do this is to train your fur friend to relieve himself in a specific spot in your yard. Set aside an area with natural wood mulch so it blends well with the urine.  Dogs respond well to training, the attention given and special praise or rewards they get for doing good things.  Don’t forget to praise your dog when it learns how to use the spot designated for relieving itself.

As you mulch, avoid using mulch from cocoa bean hulls.  This mulch smells nice and chocolaty and looks good. This mulch can be toxic to your fur friend when ingested which it’s most likely to do if it decides to inspect the good smell.

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Provide more clean water for your dog. Fresh, clean water is a must for your dog to stay hydrated.  The more water they drink, the less concentrated their urine becomes.  Try adding water to their food or feed them with canned food to dilute their pee further.  More water will mean more time to pee so it’s best to do this when having a specific place for them to pee.

Walking your dog first thing in the morning. To minimize the damage on your lawn, take your dog for a walk first thing in the morning.  The walk helps it pee elsewhere and enjoy the fresh air with its best friend. Remember you might have to carry plenty of poo bags.

Fixing Areas Where The Dog Pee Kill Grass

Once you have directed your fur friend to pee at a different point, it’s time to fix areas where the dog pee is killing your grass. There are several ways to do this

  • Water It Down Immediately. When you notice your dog peeing on the grass, try to water it down immediately or as soon as they finish. Use a hose or a watering can to damp the area as best as possible. This will help dilute the dog’s pee as well as reduce the effects.

  • Use A Lawn Repair Treatment. Sometimes it’s good to try and treat your grass before you dig it up.  Lawn treatments use soil cleansers, and organic enzymes to flush the salts out.

  • Fertilize And Water Your Grass. Using the right fertilizer will help bring the green coloring back to your yellow spots.  Proper watering and irrigation will also revitalize the area.

  • Dig It Out And Replant The Affected Area With Urine-Resistant Grass. Did you know there is urine-resistant grass?  If you are growing Bermuda and Kentucky bluegrass, they are the most sensitive to urine.  However, if you opt to grow Fescue and Ryegrass, they are the best resistant grass.

  • Take Care Of Your Lawn. Regular watering and feeding your lawns will help keep them in the best condition and repair any pee damage easily.


If you or your neighbor have a dog, you might have to deal with urine spots on your lawn.

To keep your lawn well protected from this mess, you can train your dog to do its business in a specific spot.

If you find yourself with a patch on your lawn, don’t worry too much because they are treatable.

Because you love both your lawn and your dog, you will find a way to manage both.  Pets are lovely and do not need to be punished because they peed on the lawn.  At the same time, you cant just allow them to mess with your expensive grass because your beautiful green carpet will not look beautiful anymore.

Since it’s hard to be completely free from pee, it is important to follow these tips and we hope they will help you manage your pets in a more friendly way.


What is in dog urine that causes so much damage to my grass?

The main reason why it hurts your grass lies in the fact that their urine is filled with nitrates, and these are tough for the grass to live through.

Will baking soda neutralize dog urine on grass?

Baking soda is a wonderful natural product that has many uses. I have been using it in a variety of ways for my dog, and have found that it helps keep his house clean.

My dog has been peeing on my lawn for several years. It's not just one spot, but multiple spots. I've tried putting out salt blocks and sprinkling the area with baking soda. It seems to help for a few days, then it comes back.

When should I worry about dog urine on my lawn?

If the grass is still green and doesn't look bad but it's yellowish there's a good chance that it could recover soon. If it's really yellow then you may have a problem that may require some professional support.

What can I do to restore my grass?

The grass will not get any better on its own, it needs to be fixed. A few things can help with this problem.

First, the grass needs to be fertilized properly to grow back properly. Some fertilizers can help, but others may do more harm than good. A dog’s waste and urine will contain many nutrients, but it won’t be enough to cause a lawn to recover quickly.

Second, the grass needs to be watered properly. Some dogs are known to have very dry skin, which means that they may need more water than other dogs. This is why it’s important to be aware of your dog’s condition before using any type of fertilizer or watering system.

Finally, you will need to be sure that your dog’s grass doesn’t become overgrown. Overgrowth can lead to several health problems.

Don't forget that grass can recover from most problems.

How do you stop dogs pee burning the grass?

If you can get a hold of some of that white stuff that comes out of your toilet bowl after flushing, then spread it around in the area where the dogs have been.

There are other solutions, all of which I have tried: Use a product that prevents the urine from evaporating. The most common is Urine-X (which I used on my dog's carpet for a long time), but it seems to be less effective as time goes by and the grass is exposed to direct sunlight more often. Use a product that removes the urine before it dries.

This includes using an anti-fungal product such as Banfield's Dog-Diet. You may need to use this twice or more a day until the odor disappears. Another option is to soak the carpet with a water-based product that has anti-bacterial properties, such as Urine-X or Banfield's Dog-Diet. However, the soaking process can take a very long time to work.

It works like a charm and I never have to worry about my yard again.


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