How To Stop Puppy From Eating Outdoor Plants

When your dog is outdoors, keep a tight eye on him to make sure he doesn’t consume any plants. Shouting “No” will stop your dog from showing interest in a certain plant; reward him when he walks away. In order to stop your dog from eating your plants, you can also spray him with the garden hose.

How can I stop my dog from eating my plants?

The moment your dog starts chomping on your garden or indoor plants, though, you’ve got a problem on your hands. Your dog can occasionally chew on some grass. Not only is it upsetting for you to see your lovely plants being destroyed, but some plants can also make your dog very sick. So, this is not a behavior you want to ignore. The following advice can help you prevent Fido from ruining your lovely plants.

Move Any Houseplants Out of Reach

Make sure your plants are constantly out of reach if you want your dog to stop chewing your plants. Buy some plant stands or extremely high tables. If you have any indoor vine-like plants, keep them regularly pruned to keep them out of your furry friend’s grasp. The key is that your dog can’t devour your lovely houseplants if it can’t see them or get to them.

Use Training Techniques to End the Behavior

You can attempt a few different methods to get Fido to respect your plants. Try training with traditional positive and negative reinforcement first. Get your dog’s attention by forcefully shouting “no” when you see them getting close to one of your plants. When your dog begins to back away from the plant, quickly provide them positive reinforcement by giving them food or their preferred toy.

Utilizing a repellant that reacts to motion is another method. These gadgets will sound whenever your dog approaches your plants, maybe startling them and reinforcing the idea that they don’t want anything to do with them. Your dog will still be unwilling to touch the repellent despite the fact that it is perfectly safe for both humans and animals.

Clicker training is a comparable strategy to prevent your dog from damaging your plants. You simply click the clicker and give your dog a treat whenever they stop approaching your plants too closely. Additionally, clicker training can be used to teach a wide range of various obedience abilities.

Invest in Some Diluted Lemon Juice

Most dogs dislike the taste or scent of citrus Diluted lemon juice can be your best buddy in this situation. Fill a spray bottle with the juice, then sprinkle your plants with it. You might also try chopping up lemons and putting them inside the pots as an alternative to directly spraying your plants. If you do choose to use lemon slices, make sure to replace them frequently to prevent rot.

Fence Off Your Garden

Another option is to enclose or fence off your indoor or outdoor gardens. Simple chicken wire might be adequate for tiny dogs, but if you have bigger, stronger canines, you might want to consider building a wooden or metal fence. Your indoor plants should be protected from Fido by a thin bird netting that is wrapped around the pot’s perimeter.

Even if you have successfully trained your dog to keep away from your plants, you can never be too sure that they won’t find a method to devour them once more. Your dog is a smart animal. As a result, you should never keep indoor plants that are poisonous to dogs, such as Rosary peas, Daffodils, Elephant Ears, Hyacinths, and Castor beans. You care so much about your canine friends that you constantly take the essential precautions to maintain their health.

Why does my dog consume outdoor plants?

  • Historically, wild dogs supplemented their diet with plants and leaves.
  • The omnivorous progenitors of today’s domestic dogs may have passed on this behavior to them.
  • Leaf-eating can be reduced by proper training, close attention, and understanding when to divert.

The air is becoming chilly, the trees are covered in orange-hued leaves, and the temperature is decreasing.

Although you might appreciate the sound of leaves crunching beneath your feet, you might not find it as relaxing if your dog is chomping on a few errant leaves. In the end, since it’s a part of their natural curiosity, it’s not detrimental for your dog to eat a few leaves here and there. However, there are techniques to get them to reduce their appetite for greens if they are constantly eating leaves.

Why Do Dogs Even Eat Leaves?

So why do puppies initially like to eat leaves? According to research, eating leaves is a behavior that is not exclusive to domestic dogs. When they can’t obtain their usual sources of meat, wild dogs have been seen in the wild consuming grass and leaves. Despite not being as nutrient-dense as meat, wild dogs nevertheless consume plants to supplement their diet.

Dr. Andrea Rediger, DVM, a veterinarian, claims that there is a theory explaining how domesticated dogs acquired characteristics from their wild ancestors. According to Rediger, domesticated dogs instinctively include plant matter in their diet since “undomesticated dogs are inherently omnivores (meat and plant-eaters),” he writes in an article for the Purdue University College of Veterinary Medicine.

Pica, a syndrome where dogs feel compelled to devour non-edible objects, may be a sign of more serious problems. Although your dog may have a natural urge to eat leaves, the practice could also indicate other health problems, dietary deficits, or even boredom.

Although leaves may be high in fiber, they are not nutrient-dense and won’t significantly improve your dog’s diet. Consider introducing vegetables and herbs that are suitable for dogs into your dog’s diet, such as carrots, peas, and celery, if your dog appears to enjoy the flavor or texture of leaves. You might even start a rosemary, basil, and thyme-filled herb garden for dogs.

If your dog is experiencing stomach discomfort, they may also use grass and leaves to induce vomiting and help them get rid of the discomfort. Although technically harmless, leaves and grass can obstruct the airway, especially in young animals like pups. Keep a watch on how frequently your dog throws up, especially in light of how much greenery they are consuming. It can be a symptom of a gastrointestinal problem that needs to be addressed by your veterinarian.

While out for a stroll, it’s dangerous to eat any leaves because they might be sprayed with pesticides or other dangerous chemicals. While the majority of leaves that fall from trees are safe, some hazardous trees and plants, like black walnut trees, Japanese yews, and tomato plants, can give your dog serious health problems. Before acquiring a new dog, take essential to become acquainted with the varieties of trees in your yard and surrounding area.

How Can You Curb Leaf-Eating Behavior?

Even though your dog may view leaves as a special variety of dog potato chip, cleaning up their puke after a feast is never enjoyable. There are a few simple ways to prevent your dog from eating too much fall foliage if you’re worried about the behavior.

When you first let your dog out, make sure to follow them and pay great attention to what they put in their mouths. Give them a harsh warning if they begin to devour a leaf “No, and take out the leaf delicately. Give the leash a light tug if they begin to consume leaves when out for a walk “no, and divert their focus.

If your dog is showing an interest in the leaves, they may be bored and in need of entertainment. Purchase chewing toys or other items to divert their attention from the need to devour the leaves. To challenge your dog’s brain and get them interested in anything other than leaves, you can also attempt food puzzles.

Finally, remember to schedule some time to play with your dog. Throw a ball or another toy to divert their attention if you let them outside and they begin to explore the backyard looking for a snack. The interaction with their owner and the exercise may serve as a diversion from the seasonal treat and help you and your dog form a closer bond.

Do you need assistance training your dog? In spite of the fact that you might not be able to attend live training sessions during COVID-19, we are still available to you electronically through the AKC GoodDog! Helpline. With the help of this live telephone service, you may speak with a qualified trainer who will provide you with unrestricted, personalized advise on anything from behavioral problems to CGC preparation to getting started in dog sports.

What can I use as a plant spray to deter dogs?

Your dog enjoys a salad bar in your vegetable garden. Spray plants with astringent apple bitter or white vinegar to deter him. To deter dogs and other garden pests like Mexican bean beetles, aphids, squash bugs, and whiteflies, you might also plant marigolds between vegetable rows.

However, avoid using repellents for rabbits or deer that contain coyote poop. Dogs enjoy the smell of urine and will either roll in the plants you’ve sprayed with it or leave their own stench.

How do I get my dog to quit eating my plants?

The next strategy to think about is utilizing a repellent or deterrent if training your dog doesn’t work and altering the layout of your garden is simply not an option.

If one commercially available repellent or deterrent doesn’t work for your situation, consider another one since there are many different kinds available. Although others vouch for them, I haven’t personally had to use any of them.


Water is the earliest kind of repellant. Water is a better repellant in my opinion because it won’t damage your dog or any other animals that might come into contact with it.

Similar to a sprinkler system, this kind of repellant releases brief bursts of water when it senses heat or movement rather than spraying water when you order it to (or on a schedule for automatic sprinkler systems).

The Scarecrow is a well-liked water repellent that many people use to protect their plants and gardens. This Scarecrow reacts to heat and movement by spraying a small amount of water. Additionally, it makes a sound that is believed to scare animals away.

A water-based repellent is a fantastic place to start if you’re worried about the health and welfare of your pets and other animals, even if no repellent is completely effective.


Chemicals are another typical sort of repellant used in or near gardens. Chemical repellents can be used in a variety of ways, such as by sprinkling liquid or granular chemicals over a surface, but the outcome is always the same.

Typically, chemical repellents are sprayed to the surface of your garden’s plants or the surface of the grass surrounding it. Some of these substances can also be applied to indoor houseplants.

The safety of your children, pets, and anybody else or anything else that may come into touch with the chemicals is the main worry when using chemicals as a deterrent.

Even though the manufacturers of many chemical repellents consider them to be harmless, you should always exercise caution when putting anything to your lawn or garden that might have unfavorable side effects on individuals who come into touch with it.

Personally, I would only use a chemical repellent as a last resort, but everyone has the right to choose their own course of action.


Sound is an additional obstacle that I briefly addressed before. Dogs’ ears are more sensitive than humans’, allowing them to hear frequencies that we are unable to.

A sound deterrent can be strategically positioned near your garden to keep your dog and other animals away, much as the water deterrent stated above.

Be cautious when using a sound deterrent because dogs are particularly sensitive to some frequencies. Animals with these deterrents may occasionally exhibit behavioral problems.

Household Ingredients

You don’t always have to use things that are offered for sale in stores. It’s possible that you already have some common items in your kitchen cupboards that can perform the same tasks as chemicals at a far lower cost.

You can try a few natural substances, especially with your indoor plants, as indicated in this article from Gardening Know How, to deter your dog from consuming your plants.

Lemon juice is one typical home commodity. Because dogs are known to loathe the smell of lemons, you can simply spritz some lemon juice or even scatter some small lemon slices around your plants to deter dogs.

In order to protect your plants from your dogs, vinegar, another popular household component, is sometimes combined with lemon juice (as mentioned in this article from Cuteness).

Remember that vinegar can harm your plants and has a potent smell; therefore, you should only use it in little amounts in close proximity to your plants rather than directly on them or the soil where they are growing.

When will my dog quit consuming everything outside?

The original post’s text may be found below, followed by a significant update we made to reflect fresh information and insights we have discovered to assist dog owners in resolving this issue.

Puppies often eat anything they can find outside, including grass, dirt, leaves, sticks, feces from other animals like geese, bunnies, and deer, as well as occasionally pebbles, garbage, and anything else they find when out for a walk or in the backyard.

While some of them can make some dogs sick quickly, other dogs seem to be able to eat almost anything without getting sick.

You should absolutely be more watchful about what your dog eats if he or she does have stomach distress frequently.

Although some of this behavior in puppies (and perhaps older dogs as well) is normal, it is not necessarily cause for alarm.

We must learn to choose our battles, just like in other facets of our lives. Some of my clients become alarmed when they notice their puppies gnawing on a stick or a pine cone. When Romeo was a puppy, I never made a huge deal out of it, but I did keep a close eye on him.

Items put in mouths can become choking dangers just like anything else. Sticks may become stuck in throats. But toys and bones can also. Even a product made expressly for puppies can occasionally be hazardous.

Some folks would be horrified to learn how many sticks Romeo consumed as a puppy and teenager! Yes, I gave him sticks to chew on. Was it perfect? No, of course not, but I can only buy so many bully sticks with my income, and he had a strong need to gnaw!

Many puppies consume dirt and grass. Does it damage them? Most of the time, no. However, you should consider where the grass and soil are coming from.

For the majority of dogs, eating grass is not a significant concern, but if it has been sprayed with pesticides, then you definitely need to be very careful!

Romeo eats grass pretty much every day when we go for walks, and we don’t apply any pesticides on our property. He might vomit once a year. He appears to enjoy it, and since I am aware that the grass is uncontaminated by harmful pesticides, I have no issue with it.

Of course, we don’t want our pups or adult dogs to consume certain foods.

Rocks would be a good example; but, there are others that, when used sparingly, might not be such a major concern. Most puppies will outgrow their insatiable appetites. Others will see a decrease in the behavior, albeit it might not completely disappear.

Making a big deal out of something might cause it to develop into an obsessive behavior, which can lead to more serious issues. Consider if you and your puppy really need to fight over it or whether you can let some of it go.

Just keep a watchful eye on it to make sure it’s not harmful and doesn’t make your puppy sick.

Otherwise, perhaps occasionally consuming a small amount of grass, dirt, and a stick isn’t such a horrible idea after all.