- In order to stop your dog from digging, you must first learn the reason why your dog is digging in the first place. Here below is a list of the most common reasons why a dog digs…
- Attention- Your dog might be feeling lonely and he wants your attention.
- Boredom- Because your dog is feeling bored he may dig for physical and emotional stimulation. So always make sure your dog maintains a certain level of stimulation.
- Your dog may be trying to find a mate if he is digging under the fence and trying to get to the other side!
- Dogs like ‘fresh’ dirt so they will often dig in places like your flower garden.
- The smell of fertilizer is irresistible to some dogs. So they are attracted to places like your vegetable garden-places with fertilized soil.
- Dogs are meant for the wild, so their instinct is to dig themselves a den like their relatives the wolves.
- For shelter- to cool themselves down or warm themselves up.
- Some particular breeds are very prone to digging such as terriers and labradors. Digging is like a sixth sense to them. It is instinctual and bred into them.
- Chasing- Your dog may be digging because they are going after a rodent.
- Storing Food- It is a dog’s natural instinct to hide their food.
One of the main reasons to why dogs dig is because they are bored. You have to keep a certain level of stimulation for your dog. Here are some ways to tell if your dog is bored…
- Staring at fences for a long time.
- Whines a lot
- Acts ‘hyperactive’ (digging holes)
- Tries to get your attention
In order to stop your dog from getting bored…
- Provide some entertainment such as a few tasty chew toys
- Employ a dog walker if you can’t do it yourself for some regular vigorous exercise.
The Ways of the Sandbox
If you don’t mind your dog digging but want him to do it in a certain area only, construct a sandbox in an area of your yard where it is okay for your dog to dig. After this, fence the sandbox and fill it with either freshly tilled earth. Make sure you encourage your dog’s use of the sandbox by burying treats and things that your dog likes in there.
If you are not at home to punish your dog when he digs, then you must find ways to ‘punish’ your dog for digging while you are out. Here are some suggestions you may want to try out…
- In the area where the dog digs most, place a sprinkler so if you catch your dog digging, just turn on the sprinkler.
- Bury chicken wire just under the surface of the dirt. Your dog won’t like the feel of the wire under his feet.
- Try putting something your dog doesn’t like in his holes such as his own feces. By doing so digging will be less pleasurable for him. But keep in mind that there are some dogs who eat their own poop so this advice depends on your dog.
Take Away The Temptation
- Fence your garden where there is fresh dirt so that it will be out of your dog’s reach. Remember, dogs particularly like fresh dirt so by doing this, they can’t get in and dig up the fresh dirt.
- Find all the things that your dog has buried, dig it up and remove them without your dog knowing. Then fill the hole back in.
- Make sure there is no unpleasant smells and there isn’t a rodent/ mammal problem.
- Make sure your dog does not see you dig personally when you are gardening as they take this as encouragement.