Part of great deck design is making sure the deck is a fun, safe space for everyone who will use it. This certainly includes your canine companions! Dogs spend a lot of time on decks, especially during the warm weather months. When you’re talking to your local deck contractor about having your deck built, you’ll want to keep the following tips in mind:
Everything Needs to be Non-Toxic – Especially if You’ve Got A Chewer
Dogs chew when they’re anxious, when they’re bored, when they know you have company coming over…the list is endless. You don’t want them chewing on anything that will make them sick, so make sure your local deck contractor knows how important it is to use non-toxic building materials. This means no pressure treated wood or any other building product that contains arsenic. If your dog is a big-time chewer, look into spray on cribbing solutions – these are often sold in the equine section at farm stores. These coatings make wood taste bad, so your dog won’t chew.
Dogs Need Shade
A sunny deck is great -if you have the ability to leave it whenever things get too warm. If your dog is going to be confined on the deck for any period of time, it’s important to make sure they have a shady place to get out of the sun’s hot rays. It’s also nice for them to have shelter from any sudden rainstorm or other weather event.
The Rails Need to Be Close Together
Tell your local deck contractor that it’s important that your dog not be able to squeeze their body between the deck rails – something a determined pupper might do if they see a squirrel, another neighborhood dog, the mailman, or an opportunity to go exploring. This is particularly important on upper level decks, as not all dogs understand that they will fall a great distance if they try to escape!