When summer rolls around, homeowners turn their attention towards their lawns. Maintaining a beautifully landscaped property is a lot of work, but it yields great rewards. One of the biggest problems homeowners face in tending their yard is weeds. For families that share their home with pets, it is especially difficult to keep weeds at bay. Thankfully, there are some effective weed killers on the market today that will get the job done without causing any harm to Fido or Fifi in the process.
What are Some of the Best Pet Friendly Weed Killers Available for Purchase Today?
There are many different weed killers on the market today, and each product is effective when it comes to getting rid of weeds. However, not all weed killers are safe for use around pets. Families that share their homes with a dog or a cat should be careful to select a weed killing agent that is free from chemicals that could be harmful to their pet’s health.
Here is our list of the top five pet-friendly weed killers:
Kirchner Natural Weed Killer
Dr. Kirchner Natural Weed Killer is among the most effective pet friendly weed killers on the market today. This product includes seawater in its formulation and is rated as safe for use around people, dogs, cats, chickens, and horses. It is also an environmentally friendly weed killing spray.
Based on only a very limited list of ingredients, Dr. Kirchner Natural Weed Killer contains sodium chloride, water, vinegar, and soap, making this product completely free of harmful chemicals. Though this pet friendly product will kill weeds, it will also kill grass, so it is important to spray this weed killer directly on the items to be destroyed. It is an excellent choice for getting rid of weeds in sidewalk or patio stone cracks or growing along the sides of a building or other hard surfaces.
Green Gobbler Vinegar Weed Killer
A weed killing spray that bases its formulation on vinegar, Green Gobbler Vinegar Weed Killer has been specifically created to be safe for use around pets. The main ingredient in this weed killing agent is a corn-based, concentrated vinegar that is especially potent when it comes to getting rid of stubborn weeds. This weed killer contains no glyphosate and is also biodegradable and certified for use with organic plant growing.
Green Gobbler Vinegar Weed Killer works quickly, eliminating most weeds within a 24 hour time period. This product comes ready to use straight from the bottle, requiring no mixing or dilution prior to application.
Natural Armor 30% Home and Garden Vinegar
A natural product that contains no glyphosate in its formula, Natural Armor 30% Home and Garden Vinegar is an excellent weed killer that has multiple uses including cleaning sidewalks, reducing the pH level found in soil, and bringing a shine to chrome items. A highly acidic weed killer, vinegar is the main ingredient in this spray, included at a strength of 30%. Natural Armor 30% Home and Garden Vinegar can be used as is or diluted. It comes in a sealed container and must be added to a spray bottle for application.
Natural Armor 30% Home and Garden Vinegar contains only one ingredient: exceptionally strong vinegar.
Just for Pets Weed Killer Spray
Just for Pets Weed Killer Spray is a weed eliminating product designed for use on a wide array of weeds while still remaining safe for use around pets. The product comes ready for use and is highly effective at killing weeds rapidly.
No mixing is required for this weed killing agent. A portion of the proceeds from each sale of this product is given to local animal shelters.
Preen Weed Preventer
Sometimes the best approach to weeds is to prevent them from taking root in the first place. To help keep lawns weed free, experts recommend using Preen Weed Preventer. This high performance product is comprised of ingredients that are 100% natural. The only ingredient in this weed killer is corn gluten meal, an item that is safe for use around pets. Instead of being a traditional weed killing product, corn gluten meal is an herbicide which acts as a natural inhibitor of growth of weed seeds.
Preen Weed Preventer should be applied to lawns several times throughout the year to keep weeds at bay. Unfortunately, this product does nothing to kill weeds that are already found in a yard. It is safe for use on lawns and will not kill grass or other plants. As an added bonus, Preen Weed Preventer also acts as a fertilizer, helping to improve overall lawn health.
What are Some Older Weed Killers that are Less Desirable for Use Around Pets?
There are several ingredients that are highly effective weed killing agents that are either considered to be toxic or less desirable for use around pets. These include:
Glyphosate is the main ingredient in the once popular product known as Roundup. Today, this product is banned in most countries.
Glyphosate is highly effective at killing anything it comes into contact with. It works particularly well on plants. Though it has been used for home applications, the largest industry that makes use of this chemical is agriculture.
Recent research indicates that glyphosate is not only harmful for pets, but it can also be toxic for humans. It has been linked to many health problems in owners and their pets including some forms of cancer, hormone imbalances, birth defects, and low testosterone. In dogs who may consume glyphosate through licking their paws, their kidneys can be seriously impacted by this toxin.
2, 4-D Trimec
2, 4-D Trimec is a frequently used weed killer. Classified as an herbicide, 2, 4-D Trimec is a plant hormone that works by encouraging plants with large leaves to grow in an abnormal fashion which ultimately leads to early plant death. This chemical weed killer works by limiting weed growth and encouraging lawn health.
Because this product works on a cellular level in plants, it is considered to be safe for both humans and pets. However, it is important that pets not be allowed on any surface treated with 2, 4-D Trimec until it is completely dry.
While 2, 4-D Trimec works on weeds, sethoxydim instead applies its focus to killing grass-type weeds. This product essentially works by preventing grass seeds from thriving. Within 48 hours of application, most grasses become black and complete death occurs within a two week period.
Are There are Natural Ways to Kill Weeds?
There are several things homeowners can do to kill weeds naturally. These include:
Pour boiling water on weeds
Boiling water is a solution that will kill weeds; however, it will also kill everything around the weeds as well. Though this treatment is not ideal for weeds in the yard, it is a great solution for unwanted plants that sprout up in places like driveway cracks and sidewalk crevices.
Spray vinegar on weeds
Vinegar works very well to kill weeds. However, it takes a particular type to get the job done properly. Vinegar at a concentration of 10 to 30 percent is the ideal agent for eliminating weeds. Most household vinegars such as apple cider and white vinegar are rated at only 5 percent, making them far too weak to be an effective weed killing solution.
Sprinkle salt on weeds
Regular household salt is caustic and abrasive, easily killing weeds, plants, and grass. To limit the damage done by salt, experts recommend making a solution of salt and water that can be sprayed directly on the weeds to be eliminated. The ideal solution is 3 parts of water for every part of salt.
Pull weeds by hand
Though a very time consuming process, pulling weeds by hand is the easiest way to ensure the weeds disappear and household pets remain 100 percent safe.
Include some alleopathic plants in the yard
Alleopathic plants are a type of vegetation that emits chemicals that inhibit growth in other plant life. This is an effective way to keep weeds at bay; however, it is a complicated process determining which alleopathic plants are the ideal choice to ensure plant death occurs only in the non-desirable species.
Make use of mulch
Generously layer mulch at a thickness of two to four inches around shrubbery, trees, and flowers. This will help keep weeds from encroaching in those areas. Mulch is also a great idea for areas such as walkways and dog containment yards; however, it cannot be used on grass.
Learn to love them
Sometimes the easiest way to deal with weeds is to simply make peace with them. Learning to see them as something beautiful and accepting their presence is a great strategy to ensure pets stay safe.
Is your lawn full of weeds and you wish it wasn’t? Are you worried about weed killers and how they may affect your pets? Consider our top tips to keeping your yard looking tip top while still keeping Fido and Fifi free from common weed killing toxins.