1. Everything organic sticks to schnauzer fur (think grass, leaves, dirt, mud, sticks, burrs, etc)
2. Schnauzers love to dig in mud and dirt.
3. No matter how much you wipe their paws, 75% of the dirt, grass and leaves remains and will then end up on your floors and furniture.
4. Green schnauzer paws is a common side effect of newly mowed lawn.
5. If your schnauzer smells something disgusting in the grass, it is his job to roll all over it.
6. When it has been raining for 30 days and 30 nights, you know to go ahead and run the bath water because he will always walk
through the biggest mud puddles looking for that perfect potty spot.
7. Newly cut grass is a delicacy that you will see twice, once on the lawn and then again, regurgitated on your floor.
8. Any buzzing insect on clover or a dandelion is like a squeaky toy to a schnauzer.
9. Fleas and ticks are hiding in between those blades of grass waiting to hitch a ride on your baby's beard or legs.
10. That mole in your yard is no match for a determined schnauzer.
I am not a clean freak by any stretch of the imagination, but I do like my house to look like I at least tried. Therefore I took to Pinterest to see if anyone had come up with a solution for helping to keep the great outdoors, well, outdoors! With five schnauzers going outside an average of, let's say, six times a day, that means I am cleaning 120 paws EVERY SINGLE DAY! (Calgon, take me away!)
Here are some Pinterest ideas I came across:
After much discussion with my husband, we came up with our own version. We figured a 8 foot by 12 foot section would be plenty big enough and decided the area off the back of our deck would be the best location. (I like to keep the babies close out of the clutches of coyotes, hawks and other predators.)
We would cut through part of the deck rails to make a walkway with steps down to the graveled area. We decided to build a permanent fence around the area as opposed to the x-pens we have always used for them.
We enclosed the bottom of the deck using two treated deck boards. We sunk five four-by-fours approximately two feet and connected them with two-by-fours. After making sure everything was level, we added some concrete to the holes and let it sit a couple of days for the concrete to dry.
We pulled our vinyl coated fencing from one end to the other and used a staple gun to fasten (we did this in three separate sections). We then trimmed with a second two-by-four to cover the fencing on the inside. We cut out the section of deck where the stairs would go and attached the risers to the deck and finished adding the steps to the risers.
We put down a layer of landscaping fabric to stop the grass from growing through the rock. We used a piece of old fire hose to lay around the bottom edge to insure the gravel didn't work it's way out under the fence. Then it was time to dump the gravel in. We used a larger pea gravel for the first layer and the smaller pea gravel for the second layer. We decided to leave it at two layers right now and may add more later if needed.
We added some decorative solar light caps on each post and had a grand opening for the dogs:
We still have a little cosmetic work to do on the deck opening and will paint everything in the Spring, but it is functional and this is one happy mom.
We have been using it now for two weeks and you cannot imagine how much cleaner my dogs and house are.
I have a little garbage can with a lid, rake and bin that I keep in the corner to clean up the poop and the rain does a nice job of washing away any urine that may remain on the rocks. If I start to smell urine next summer, I will just hose it down from time to time.