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Discussion Starter #1
So I built my puppers a 20 foot by 40 foot dog run over the summer and converted the garage into an attached dog house. In the summer I scoop at the end of each day, then rake the gravel to disperse missed crumbs and I spray the gravel down with water and bleach every two months. Winter is a different story and now that its warmed up a bit I've taken the opportunity to go and scoop what I couldn't find when the area was covered in snow...I nearly broke my back moving the garbage pale full of crap...good times.

I'm looking for any and every tip any one of you can give for keeping the dog's enclosure clean, free of parasites, fun, etc...If you are using any chemicals that are earth friendly to maintain your runs, please let me know that as well. I really would love to find a enzyme of some sort that I could spray in between cleanings to help break down microbes and missed crumbs.

Mucho gracias.
 

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I used to have gravel runs for my dogs... One thing I put up was a gravel washing pit.... I would pickup every day and toss all the dirty gravel onto a washing screen (Hardwear Cloth)... then using a high pressure hose I'd wash all the nasty stuff off and into a disposal area, then remove the washed gravel and return it to the runs. You could certainly add some kind of bleach or other cleanser to it... Be careful bleaching the runs directly as it can burn the pads, and harm the pooches if they swallow it.

Twice a year I removed most of the gravel (spring/fall) turned the dirt below it and treated it with a combo of salt and Borax... this will even kill whip/hook worm eggs. The runs need to sit for 24 hours, then be wet down heavily, and the gravel returned. Treat the gravel @ the same time, but you want to get to the ground under it. There used to be a fertilizer (Sodium Borate) that combined the salt/borax but I had trouble finding it and had to use salt and borax separately the last years I had runs.
 

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As a precaution once or twice a year I will spray malathion or Pyrethrum or some other similar insecticide around the pet runs; I also do it if I suspect the dog might have worms. We used to be part of the wildlife rescue, raise and release program for the local zoo; so we had a lot of raccoons, possums, skunks and birds that were used to keep pent up; so as a precaution we cleaned the pen daily with a solution of Clorox. When we had other animals about monthly I would put chlorine pool shock in a garden hose fertilizer siphoning plastic dispenser and spray down the dog run pea gravel. But it was dangerous stuff to use, it could burn your skin or your clothing and it could corrode metal and it was dangerous to breath and it could cause blindness if you got it in your eyes and it would kill grass so you had to be very careful not to be sloppy, wear gloves, masks and expendable work clothing rinse off the dispenser afterwords and not stand in the fumes or mist and to be very careful with overspray.

Not so much a maintenance tip, but more of concern for health of the feet of your dog. I would be very careful about the type of gravel. Typical gravel can be very hard on dogs feet and not exactly what I would recommend for a dog run as it might cause cuts and infections and possible bone injuries. I would recommend pea gravel. It's not sharp and does not cut typical gravel. Pea gravel should be small like the size of a pea and fairly smooth and somewhat round.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thanks both of you for the suggestions.

Yup they have pea gravel, I didn't want anything that would hurt their paws.

Does anyone have suggestions for making winter cleanup more bearable?
 

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Originally Posted By: BluewolfDoes anyone have suggestions for making winter cleanup more bearable?
Move to a warmer climate.

One of those extremely cold days well below freezing in the deep snow my dog was recovering from diarrhea and she had a bowel movement that wasn’t liquid enough to leave but it wasn’t solid enough to easily pick up; so I had this brainstorm that I should just leave it there and come back and pick it up later after it had frozen. It wasn’t until later when I came back after it had melted through the snow and had solidly frozen to the ground that I realized that my brainstorm was not completely thought out, thus very stupid. I felt rather humiliated as I had to get the ice chipper to pick up after the dog.
 
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