Common Dog-Walking Hazards (Part 1)


The danger of exposed metal 
edging to pedestrians.

In an earlier story I wrote about how we tend to observe the small details in the neighborhood when you spend the time walking as opposed to driving in an automobile. It’s at the pedestrian level where common dog-walking hazards that you wouldn’t think twice about often make themselves known.

For example, many of the homes in our high desert climate are landscaped in a xeroscape fashion, which means they are designed to use low resources of water. The typical green lawn is replaced with ground coverings of colored rock, wood mulch, or small patches of grass that are separated from one another with an edging material. This edging can be manufactured of plastic, brick, wood, or metal, where metal is the preferred choice because of its durability, its low cost, and its professional appearance.

But did you know that the unfinished edge of this metal is also very sharp to the touch? It’s similar in fact to a knife’s blade that will easily cut through the soft pads of a dog’s paw, or the human foot if you’re walking barefoot or in open sandals. The walking danger magnifies itself when that metal edging has been improperly installed above the surface of the sidewalk as seen in the photographs. A common occurrence I might add. Apparently no one ever thought to tell the installer that the metal landscape edging is positioned flush, or better yet lower than the top surface of the sidewalk. Each day on our morning walk Chloe and I must be aware of such conditions in order to safely steer away from this common dog-walking hazard.

Metal edging improperly installed above the sidewalk's surface.
The exposed edge of the metal material can cut like a knife.

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