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What Is the Best Dog Repellent For Lawns?

Dogs are beautiful and comforting pets, but they can be a nuisance, especially when they keep pooping, urinating, and digging holes on your well-maintained lawn.

The situation is even worse if it’s not even your dog destroying your lawn.

To keep your lawn looking pristine, you have to keep the dogs off. How do you do it?

Since you can’t be on your lawn all the time chasing away any dogs that intrude, one of the most effective ways to do it is to use dog repellents.

An ideal dog repellent should be harmless to the dog as you don’t want to incur huge veterinary bills or a lawsuit when you harm a neighbor’s dog. The deterrent should also be cheap.

Wondering what is the best dog repellent for lawns? The best one is the scarecrow sprinkler. Unlike other dog repellents that come in granule, powder, and spray form and require a regular application, this one is simply a device you hook to your garden hose and let its motion-activated mechanism do the work.

Since no chemicals are involved, you don’t have to worry about hurting your curious furry friend.

If other animals infiltrate your lawn, you don’t have to worry about taking other animal control measures as the scarecrow sprinkler will repulse all the animals, including stray cats, birds, and other garden pests.

Which is the best scarecrow sprinkler?

While many brands make scarecrow sprinklers, not all are good. One of the best sprinklers I have come across is the orbit 62100-yard enforcer motion-activated sprinkler with day and night detection modes.

Orbit 62100 Yard Enforcer Motion Activated Pest Deterrent Sprinkler
  • ULTIMATE YARD PROTECTION - Defend your yard with our powerful motion-activated sprinkler that deters animals and pests effectively.
  • SENSOR-ACTIVATED YARD SECURITY SPRINKLER - The heat and motion-activated sensor detects movement up to 40 feet away, triggering a burst of water to keep unwanted visitors away.
  • DUAL-PURPOSE SPRINKLER - Our motion-activated sprinkler not only repels animals but also allows you to add additional sprinklers to the enforced area for complete coverage.

Last update on 2024-07-23 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

This sprinkler comes with several attractive features:

  • Sprays up to 70 feet
  • Works both during the day and at night
  • It causes no harm to dogs and other animals
  • Can tell the difference between trees and animals, so it doesn’t go off unnecessarily
  • You can also use it as a yard sprinkler

Visit the product page to learn more about it

How the scarecrow sprinkler works

The sprinkler works by detecting the animal’s heat, and once triggered, it deploys a burst of water that scares away the dog. The deterrent makes it even more effective and makes unexpected sounds and moves around.

Tips for getting the most from the dog repellent

To have an easy time keeping the dogs off your lawn using this repellent, you should consider several tips. These tips include:

  • When placing the deterrent, ensure that the motion sensor is unobstructed. This calls for you to avoid placing it in the tree line. You also should never cover the sensor.
  • Also, ensure that the metal ground peg is firmly held in the ground to avoid false triggering when the device moves around due to strong winds.
  • Never point the sensor towards the foliage, as this can cause false triggering during strong winds.
  • If you have a pool in your backyard, place the sensor less than 1.5m from the edge of the pool to detect motion both on the water and around the edge of the pool.
  • If you have a large lawn, one scarecrow sprinkler isn’t enough—you have to invest in several. A good rule of thumb is to ensure that one sprinkler covers no more than a 10m x 16m area.
  •  When connecting the hose to the sprinkler, ensure that the hose you use is sufficient to avoid using joiners that reduce the water pressure.
  • After installing the sprinkler, test it to confirm that it will work when the dog comes close. To test, stand behind or to the side of the sprinkler and slowly move your hand in the left and right directions 1m in front of the motion sensor. If working, the sprinkler should spurt water.

Important dog behavior you should be aware of

You will have an easy time deterring visiting dogs from the lawn, as they are aware they are intruding.

Your pet dog may require more time to realize that it shouldn’t go to the lawn. Due to this, you should leave the sprinkler in place much longer for your dog to learn.

How do you take care of the scarecrow sprinkler?

You don’t want to head to the stores every few months to buy a new sprinkler, do you? To ensure that this doesn’t happen, you need to take good care of your sprinkler.

How do you do it?

As a rule of thumb, don’t let your dog play with the sprinkler as a toy. Most dogs enjoy the water on a hot day, so don’t introduce your dog to the repellent on a hot day as it might treat it as a toy.

In fact, it might view the sprinkler as a way to cool off, so when the temperatures rise, the dog runs to the lawn to cool off and play with the sprinkler.

As you can guess, this increases the chances of the sprinkler getting damaged as it’s a matter of time before the dog chews it off.

Before attaching the sprinkler to the hose, inspect and clean the filter mesh.

If it’s winter and the weather forecast predicts that the temperatures will drop below zero degrees, move the scarecrow sprinkler indoors to protect it from freezing.

Always connect the sprinkler to clean drinking water to avoid blockages and give the filters a long life. Never use saltwater, bore water, brackish water, or dam water.

If you live in an area where the water pressure is too high, use a pressure reducer to avoid damaging the sprinkler.

Common problems you might have with your scarecrow sprinkler and how to solve them

Failure of the sensor to detect dogs

You must have installed the sprinkler improperly. As mentioned above, for the sprinkler to detect a dog or any other animal, it should be installed in such a way that the sensor views the animals walking across the viewing area and not towards the sensor.

If you are having a problem with the installation, hire a professional to help you out.

You also should ensure that the sensor is installed at about the same height as the animal.

The other reason the sensor can’t detect the animals is because the sensor is dirty. To get the sprinkler to work, you need to clean the sensor with a damp cloth.

You should note that the sensor doesn’t work flawlessly—there are some instances when it will fail to pick the animal even if there is nothing wrong with it. Some of these situations include:

  • When it’s too hot, the sensor might fail to detect the animal’s heat as the animal’s temperature, and that of the surrounding are almost equal.
  • When the animal moves extremely slowly or too fast

Sprinkler spraying without much force

Some of the factors that can bring about this include:

  • Water tap fully on
  • Debris blocking the in-line water filters
  • The water hose is kinked
  • Hose blocked

You should inspect the sprinkler and fix the source of the problem.

Sprinkler not spraying

Your scarecrow sprinkler will fail to spray the dog when:

  • The water tap is switched off
  • Water pressure is too high or too low
  • Hose is kinked
  • Hose is blocked
  • Worn-out batteries

Check for a blockage at the in-line water filter and remove it if present. Also, consider getting a new set of batteries.

Sprinkler activating even when there is no dog

The sprinkler is supposed to go off when it detects a dog, but if it’s going off, even if there isn’t an animal present, it means there is something wrong, and you should address it immediately.

One of the primary reasons why it’s going off while it shouldn’t is because it recently moved. You need to give it at least 10 minutes to stabilize and acclimatize to the new heat environment.

The sprinkler will also get activated if you have poorly installed it. Have you installed the sprinkler here?

  • In areas where people and pets regularly pass by
  • Areas with foliage that might move about in the breeze
  • Facing upward toward the sky
  • Near sources of hot air movement such as roof, heaters, and air conditioning equipment
  • Near moving water
  • Dappled sunlit areas that fluctuate in brightness and hat intensity
  • Near car headlights

Move the sprinkler from here and install it properly.

Are there other cheaper dog repellent options?

If you don’t have money to buy a scarecrow sprinkler, there are other cheaper alternatives you can go with. They include:

Ammonia or vinegar

One of the best sprays you can make is a mixture of ammonia or vinegar. The beauty is the ingredients are readily available and inexpensive.

You need to make a 50/50 solution of ammonia or vinegar, and water, then spray the areas where you want to deter the dogs.

You should note that high concentrations of either product will kill your lawn, so don’t spray the solution directly on your lawn. Instead, spray it on the edges.

The solution works by releasing an awful odor that keeps the dogs away.

Warning: Do not mix ammonia and vinegar. While you can’t get hurt by doing it, vinegar and ammonia neutralize each other resulting in an ineffective saltwater solution.


Dogs don’t like the smell of citrus, so orange, lemon, and grapefruit peels are highly effective dog repellents.

You need to toss the fruit peels around the areas where you don’t want the dogs to go.

While this is an effective way to deter dogs, tossing too many peels in your yard might give the impression that you are unhygienic, which might draw rodents into your yard.

You should moderate the number of peels you toss in your yard. For an even better look, restrict the peels to your backyard, away from the public view.

Commercial dog sprays

If you have a little budget and don’t want to go through making your spray, you can always buy already made sprays.

One of the popular sprays in the market you can go with is the Critter Ridder, which gives off a black pepper smell that dogs don’t like.

There is also a liquid fence that you apply to the areas where the dogs urinate.

The spray masks the urine and poop smells, discouraging the dogs from doing their business in your yard. When in the market, buy a liquid fence specially formulated for dogs.

Build a fence

Don’t want the trouble of buying dog repellents? You can always put up a fence around your yard to prevent the dogs from gaining access to your property.

Although the fence is expensive, it comes with multiple benefits. Besides keeping the pesky dogs out of your lawn, it also provides privacy and increases curb appeal.

For the best outcome, install an ideal fence for your home.

Do you have a rustic yard? Erect a chain-link fence. For the less public areas of your yard, build a mesh or hardware cloth containment fencing.

A shorter, pretty picket fence is enough for the front yard to keep the curious canines off your lawn.

On my 15th birthday, I became the designated gardener in my home.

Now at 32, I have a small garden and every day I'm out trying different plants and seeing how they grow. I grow guavas, peaches, onions, and many others. Want to know more about me? Read it here.

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