Should I Keep My Dog Off New Sod? (Yes, Here’s How Long)

If you’re planning to lay new sod, you’ll want to protect it from your canine friend. The problem with dogs when it comes to laying sod is that they will urinate on your lawn. Some dogs are also prone to digging, and if they see that new sod has been laid, they may be tempted to dig.

Dog on Sod

Laying new sod can give you a lovely green, healthy lawn. You’ll need to protect your new sod so that it’s not affected by your dog. Once the sod has established itself and grown a healthy root system, you’ll be able to allow your dog on the sod.

If you plan to lay new sod this season, read on.

Quick Help Table

Question Quick Answer
Can dogs walk on new sod immediately after installation? No, it’s best to keep dogs off new sod for at least 2 weeks to allow roots to establish.
How long before dogs can play on new sod? Wait 4-6 weeks before allowing dogs to play on new sod to ensure it is fully rooted and can withstand the activity.
Are there any precautions to take when dogs first use new sod? Yes, initially limit playtime and avoid heavy activity on new sod. Monitor for signs of wear and give the sod time to recover between uses.
How can you protect new sod from dogs? Use temporary fencing to keep dogs off, create designated pathways, and introduce the sod area gradually to prevent damage.
What if a dog needs to use the area for bathroom breaks? Designate a small, specific area for bathroom breaks and train your dog to use it. This helps protect the rest of the sod.
How can you repair damage if a dog harms the new sod? Patch damaged areas with fresh sod or seeds. Ensure proper watering and care to encourage growth.

Should I Keep My Dog Off New Sod?

Do Not Let Your Dog Walk on New Sod

You may decide to lay new sod in your yard if your grass is currently patchy or to cover areas that didn’t have grass before. If you own a dog, you may need to replace grass that’s been damaged by dog urine or by your dog digging holes. You’ll have to take some precautions when you first lay new sod so that it can become established and develop a healthy root system.

It’s best to keep your dog off new sod for at least two weeks until the roots have grown. Some professional gardeners recommend keeping your dog off new sod for two months if possible. When sod is first laid, the roots will be very short and near to the surface of the ground. At this stage, the roots can be easily damaged by your dog’s urine.

Why Keeping Your Dog off New Sod is a Good Idea

Keep Your Dog Off of New Sod

Your soil’s condition will determine whether or not the new sod will grow and how healthy it will be in the long run. Dogs’ urine can damage new sodas; it adds salts to the soil and causes poor biological activity. The soil won’t be able to break down the nitrogen and salts which are found in dog urine. Once the roots have ground deeper, which will take a few months, the grass will be less affected by dog urine, and you can let your pet outside in your yard.

How badly your lawn will be affected by dog urine will depend on the history of your yard’s underlying soil. If you’ve previously had grass growing in your lawn and your dog is regularly allowed out in the yard, there’s likely to be a build-up of toxins, salts, and nitrogen in the soil.

New sod is often laid because the existing lawn has become very patchy or completely died. You can lay sod over the existing dead grass if you want. If you lay new sod on soil that contains toxins, it’s likely that it will seem healthy for the first couple of months and will then start to deteriorate slowly.

A sudden downturn in the sod health is caused by the roots growing into unhealthy soil. It’s a good idea to try to improve your soil’s overall health before laying new sod. You can achieve this by keeping your dog off your lawn for a couple of months before you lay the sod. Give your sod plenty of water to wash away the dog urine, and then do a ph. Test to check the quality of your soil. You can then add compost or fertilizers as needed before laying the new sod.  Make sure to use a fertilizer made for sod.

How to lay sod so that it’s not affected by your dog

Can Dogs Walk on New Sod

Most pet owners like to allow their dogs time outside in the yard daily. It can therefore be tricky to give your yard time to recover and then keep your dog off the newly laid sod. The best thing to do is to divide your yard into two sections and deal with one piece at a time. You can then restrict your dog’s access to one area of your lawn while the soil recovers and the new sod grows sufficient roots.

Once your lawn is established, your soil should be able to break down toxins in your dog’s urine, and your yard will look beautiful with healthy, lush, green grass.

Bottom Line

Dogs can not walk on new sod for about two weeks.

It’s a good idea to divide your yard into two different sections. This will allow you to improve the soil condition and lay new sod in one area at a time. Block your yard off so that your dog stays off the newly laid sod.

It’s best to keep your dog off the new sod until it establishes itself and grows a strong root system. This may take a couple of months. Once you’ve done the first section, you’ll be able to let your dog back on the grass and work on the second section.