One thing we've learned since becoming fur parents is that picking pet-friendly products—flooring to synthetic grass, accessories to cleaning solutions—is anything but straightforward.
From design and functionality, to comfort, safety, and cost, how do you make the right choice when you share every square metre of your property with furry companions? 🤔
You need facts, for starters! It also helps when you actually understand what the experts are talking about. So, today, we're tackling the characteristics of synthetic grass to help you weed out the mediocre from the best artificial grass for dogs.
Turf terminology and insider tips
If chatting with turf suppliers leaves you confused, then this explainer is just what you need!
Yarn refers to the material used to make the blades of your fake grass. You have three main options, but combination products are available too.
This yarn has a soft and delicate texture that is lightweight, flexible, and budget-friendly. Unfortunately, thin blades don't hold up well against standard wear and tear and prolonged periods of high heat. Polypropylene fibres also lack resilience, which makes them prone to looking flat.
✔️ It's best for decorative purposes and low-traffic areas.
Polyethylene turf is a best-seller due to its durability, affordability, and true-to-life appearance. It's also low-maintenance! 👏 This one only requires occasional upkeep (with a high-performance rake designed to lift individual turf blades and bring their bounce back) to keep it in good shape.
✔️ It's best for active families with pets.
Nylon fibre produces the toughest, stiffest, and most heat-resistant fake grass. It can withstand routine heavy use and high temperatures without melting, deforming, or losing stability! Explains why nylon is the most expensive option.
✔️ It's best for high-traffic spaces, athletic fields, and sports usage.
Tip: For most households, polyethylene or a polyethylene & nylon mix is a reliable choice. Also, look for UV-stabilised yarn. This feature protects your turf from discolouration and rapid degradation due to the sun's rays.
Pile height measures the length from the turf backing to the top of the blade. In other words, it's how tall your grass is.
It may not appear life-like, but a short pile is easier to clean, more comfortable for doggy paws, and stable enough for all their rowdy playtime!
This height creates the full, lush, and bouncy aesthetic homeowners want.
The main challenge with a height over 37mm is that grass fibres become heavy; they may struggle to stay upright. The result is flat, visibly fake turf.
Tip: You can't go wrong with medium-pile artificial turf, which ranges from 30 to 37mm in height.
This term describes how lush or sparse your turf is in terms of stitches or blades per square metre.
You might also come across "face weight". That's the weight of the yarn (grass fibres) minus the weight of its backing.
Tip: As a rule of thumb, the higher the density or face weight, the higher the quality and durability of your synthetic grass.
Brands have proprietary technology, but the most popular options include hole-punched and permeable turf backing. While more affordable, the former is not ideal because pet urine may pool between the holes. That leads to foul odours! 🥴
Tip: Permeable backing drains more liquid per hour than the hole-punched alternative. That's a crucial feature when you have pets! Regardless, an odour-free lawn can only be achieved with proper maintenance—and the firepower of PetLab's Artificial Grass Super Concentrate Duo Pack.
Infill is the material that fills in the spaces between grass blades and protects the turf backing. But that’s not all:
- Infill prevents shifting by weighing your turf down.
- It adds a cushioning effect, which has a direct impact on turf resilience.
- It helps keep individual grass blades upright.
Tip: The safest bet is a non-toxic, antimicrobial infill that does NOT absorb or retain liquids.
Even though pet pee doesn't usually cause discolouration of fake turf, lighter tones are recommended. (Don't forget to double-check that your product warranty covers replacement if urine-related fading occurs.) Nevertheless, you can opt for a single shade or a combination of several colours.
Tip: Some love a dark and vibrant green, but multi-tone grass best resembles the real deal.
In short, with the right features, your turf should last many years. You read that right: Quality turf can withstand your CrossFit-training husband, rambunctious kids, and energetic pets running around! 🐾