Southern Landscape Lighting Systems of Alpharetta, GA, designs, installs, and services residential and commercial LED landscape lighting systems in the metro Atlanta area. The team of lighting professionals is committed to designing and installing landscape lighting that accentuates the beauty of the home and enhances curb appeal while also providing functionality, durability, longevity, safety, security, and energy efficiency. Because LED landscape lighting technology is low voltage, this type of lighting is very energy efficient, using only about 20% of the energy needed for traditional halogen lighting. The high efficiency of LED lighting also results in a lower operational temperature. The lower voltage and cooler operating temperature make a residential LED low-voltage landscape system very pet-friendly.
Traditional Halogen Landscape Lighting: Not Pet-Friendly
LED lighting technology is overtaking halogen technology as the first choice of homeowners for landscape lighting. Still, many homes have halogen lighting. Listed below are some key reasons why traditional halogen landscape lighting technology is not pet-friendly.
1. Halogen lighting is high voltage.
Operating at 120v, halogen lighting can cause severe electrical shock, topical burns, or cardiac arrest to a small to medium-sized dog. A recent report revealed the most popular dog breeds of 2022 in the metro Atlanta area: French bulldog, golden retriever, Labrador retriever, German shepherd, and the poodle. All dogs, not just Labradors, love to sniff, dig, paw, pull, and chew anything and everything in the yard. For those Alpharetta residents who own an English Mastiff, not much can withstand their bite force of 556 pounds per square inch, including landscape lighting fixtures.
These curious, playful pets can sustain electrical shock or arc burns to the nose and mouth from sniffing, chewing, gnawing, and pawing wires, fixtures, and panel boxes. Some breeds of dogs are temperamental and aggressive. A tingle, jar, or jolt may throw the pet into a rage that does not subside until the lighting fixture, wiring, and any panel boxes are ruined beyond repair or destroyed. Electrical shock or injury is also possible during wet weather or when the irrigation system activates.
2. Halogen lighting is very hot.
Halogen bulbs burn at temperatures high enough to cause brush fires if combustible debris such as leaves, pine needles, and mulch collect on or around the fixtures. Dogs love to sniff and lick almost everything, including landscape lighting fixtures that were just serviced and cleaned by the landscape lighting maintenance crew. If the fixture is hot, the unlucky pet can receive severe topical burns to the nose, lips, and tongue. Accidental contact with hot fixtures with other parts of the dog’s anatomy, such as the ears, tail, or paw pads, could require an emergency visit to the family veterinarian.
3. Bright lights may bother some pets.
A dog’s sense of smell can range from 10,000 to 100,000 times more acute than humans, and these furry friends can hear up to four times farther away than humans. Canines can hear higher frequencies and differentiate between various sounds, including the family car from other vehicles in the neighborhood. Also, dogs can see almost as well as humans can. If traditional halogen landscape lighting is painful and offensive to people, dogs may find it just as annoying.
4. Brittle filaments and flimsy fixtures often land the family dog in the doghouse.
Halogen filaments are brittle and may be damaged by a sudden impact from a happy puppy bounding through a flower garden or water feature in a frenetic search for a tennis ball or favorite chew toy.
5. Some landscape lighting technologies may be loud.
Halogen and fluorescent bulbs may at times generate a low-volume buzzing noise. This low humming noise or “filament sing” can annoy or disturb dogs, who may respond with a fight or flight response. While LED bulbs can also occasionally produce a humming, buzzing, or whining noise, the issue can be remedied by replacing the offending LED bulbs or fixtures.
LED: A Pet’s Best Friend
LED landscape lighting technology is a pet’s best friend for several reasons.
- LED technology is low voltage, reducing the potential for electrocution and arc burns from chewing wiring and fixtures.
- The cooler operational temperatures of LED bulbs all but eliminate the risk of topical burns to a dog’s nose, lips, and tongue.
- LED lighting is easier on a dog’s eyes. The sharp, crisp beam edges allow the light to be focused on the object to be illuminated while reducing light diffusion and glare. Neighbors will also appreciate the reduction in light pollution.
Also, a cat’s eyes are six times more sensitive to light than humans. Excessively bright lights can cause eye pain, eye injury, partial loss of eyesight, or blindness. Other nocturnal animals may suffer the same discomfort and eye damage as cats when exposed to bright lights.
- Outdoor LED lighting fixtures and bulbs are extremely durable. The all-metal, CNC-milled fixtures provided by Southern Landscape Lighting System are manufactured to withstand heavy punishment, such as would be the case with the English mastiff and its 556 psi jaw strength. The premium quality fixtures and durable bulbs keep the dogs out of the proverbial doghouse.
- LED lighting technology is quiet and can operate silently. The homeowner and neighbors are spared the annoyance of fretful whining, constant baying, and endless barking while the system is operational. Everyone sleeps better, including the dogs.