It is very true that an average dog loves to dig. Similarly, it is also true that letting dogs dig now and then is healthy. As a pet owner, your responsibility is to look for ways on drawing the line between natural behavior and a free reign to become a destructive pet any way he pleases. When you have a great dog and a beautiful garden, you need to know how to stop a dog from digging to let them coexist in peace.
Table of Contents
- Why Dogs Digging?
- How to Keep Dogs From Digging?
- How to Stop a Dog From Digging Holes?
- Why Do Dogs Bury Bones?
Why Dogs Digging?
If you are interested to know how to stop dogs from digging, you need to understand the real reasons why they are doing it in the first place. Below are some of the most common reasons why canines dig every chance they get.
- Boredom – Your pup could get as bored as humans like yourself, and this will make them search for fun ways for passing this spare time.
- Not enough exercise – No matter how laid back your pet might be, he will still need play time for releasing his pent up energy. Digging usually serves this very purpose.
- Separation anxiety – Most canines can get so attached to their family to the point that they find it hard to be away from them for a period of time. When it comes to how to stop a dog from digging under walls or fences, you have to know that this could be a sign that they just want to get out to you.
- The desire to be free – It is not really a sign that your pooch hates being with your family and instead, this is a sign of him going back to his natural instincts to run free. Seeing the great world beyond your garden fence is often enough to make your pet want to be there outside and explore things.
How to Keep Dogs From Digging?
As you have learned above, dogs dig for several reasons, and even though it is not really harmful, this can leave your garden and yard looking less than spectacular.
Before deciding to give up on your prized roses, know that there are actually some tips on how to stop a dog from digging, and regain the good looks of your garden.
A digging dog could make a real mess of your garden. Your budding archaeologist has a long list of reasons for doing so. He might actually be doing it as his way of joining you when you tend to your garden. He could also dig to help him keep cool, bury some bones, or even as result of boredom. Remember that every cause requires a specific solution.
For all canines that love to dig, setting up their very own digging spot could help in redirecting this behavior. To ensure that your garden remains secure and your plants safe, several adjustments could also be made to save your garden with no need for you to resort to punishment.
Set Up an Exclusive Digging Spot
If your pup loves digging yard and garden, instead of trying to stop, you can easily redirect this behavior to a more appropriate location. You can section off an existing for your pet, or you can buy a shell pool or sandpit that they can use. Sand is considered to be much cleaner and better than soil for your pet to dig in since soil usually contains fungal elements and molds. You could make the digging spot more attractive through burying his toys there and digging there together for you to show him how this works. Every time you see him digging, you just gently lead him to the spot and praise him when he digs there. Most canines will join in when you garden, so having a spot where he can dig only means that he can still stay outdoors with you while you are busy with your gardening, and him doing his own gardening, too.
Secure Your Garden from Your Digging Furry Friend
To protect the root systems of your plants, you can place rocks or large pebbles around the base of the plants. If you have dog digging fence, you might want to have some underground chicken-wire or pavers to stop him from getting outside. Don’t use any attractive manure or compost in your garden. Most canines also love digging in nice fresh soil, so don’t put any new plants or soil in for a while until he learns to dig in his own spot. There are a lot of ineffective products available on how to stop a dog from digging so be wary where you will be spending your hard-earned money. It is much better to invest in chews and toys that can help keep your pet occupied.
No to Punishment
When it comes to knowing how to stop dogs from digging, one thing you have to remember is that punishment is never recommended to deter behavior. You will be much better off if you redirect behavior and reward good behavior instead of punishing your pet. It could be very hard to remotely punish without your pet seeing you so spraying him with the house can actually backfire. No one wants their pooch to fear them and fear retribution, especially when more often than not, your pet doesn’t even have any idea why you are punishing him in the first place.
Keep Your Pet Cool to Keep Him from Digging
There are canines that dig a nice hole where they can lie in to stay cool. If this is the case with your pet, the best way on how to stop a dog from digging is by searching for ways for making their bed feel cooler and much more comfortable. It might mean having to move this to the shadier area or putting some frozen drink bottles inside or some wet towels on the top.
Ensure that there’s no carpet on the floor of the kennel and that beddings can be placed in the machine on hot cycle to help reduce the things that cause itch including allergies and fleas to the dust mites. There’s no point in washing the blankets or cover on the pillow when the creepy crawlies can live in bulky bedding. A flea or mite resistant bed for bigger dogs seems like a trampoline style bed that enables air to circulate under the bed on hot sunny days.
If your dogs are digging to hide bones or toys, they are placing them in their savings account for later consumption. Such bones can be a bit disgusting by the time they’re exhumed. So, it is important that you consider changing him into something less perishable including pig’s ear, dried kangaroo tail or greenie. Once you give your dog a bone, consider giving him as his breakfast for you to be sure that he’ll eat it. See to it that every bone is raw and consider the chicken necks if your dog buries his bones as these can be eaten their entirety and are small and nice. Supervise your dog always when eating bones and make sure that he’s not damaging his teeth or he’s not eating too quickly.
Keep the Boredom at Bay
If your dog is always digging because of boredom, why not take him out for a run or walk in the morning? It does not have to be a long, tiring walk, yet mental stimulation will surely help keep him happy. Consider additional training, a dog daycare that will keep him busy or hire a dog walker. Moreover, take a look at several treats and toys available to keep him busy while you’re gone. Chewing is known stress reliever and boredom buster for dogs. With any particular toy, ensure that he’s safe and must not be chewing pieces of the toys and swallowing them and once your dog is fond of chewing hard things, consult your vet to check his dental health.
Avoid Outside Distractions
There are times that dogs dig under the fences because they’re trying to get a thing outside of their reach. If you find it as a problem, it might be a good idea to block off that particular area completely and never allow your dog to go in that yard’s part. You may also control the outside distractions. For instance, if it is a smelly garbage can, move or take out the trash to a place that can’t be smelled or seen by the dog. If your fence is right on the sidewalk and the outside distraction is some animals or people walking by, move your dog to the other part of your yard.
Comfort is the Key
If your pet loves spending more time outside including night time hours and does not have a comfortable place to sleep, he may start digging because of this. Make sure that he has a clean kennel that has good bedding or a part of your yard that gives him with a den-like environment.
How to Stop a Dog From Digging Holes?
If you have dogs that have real love of getting their paws dirty, you’re going to devote some of your time and a bit of craftiness to reach the resolution. A good way to get rid of this kind of behavior before it starts to choose a breed that might not be as prone to digging as another. Huskies, terriers, and malamutes are some examples of dog breeds that have a love of digging. If you’re looking at mixed-breed dogs with some of the mentioned breeds, know which one appears the most dominant.
No matter what the breed is, each dog displays his own individual traits. What it means is that you cannot really know for sure whether or not the dog that comes from the breed that does not typically dig will live by such norms. If you have to place a bet on the breed that’s sure to dog, consider going with the terrier. Its name means “go to Earth” that must provide you real clue to their rational digging behavior.
- Some dogs require broader horizons.
- Separation anxiety – This happens when dogs are separated or isolated from their owner. It’s one of the common issues that dogs develop.
- Boredom – some dogs have to do something to kill time when they’re alone. Digging provides them a sense of distraction and purpose from home alone time.
- Lack of Exercise – If the dog does not need any exercise, digging is an alternative exercise for him to burn extra energy.
- Dog digs for the reason that dogs are just dogs. Digging is dog’s real nature, and some dogs might think they are helping you out by seeing them.
Why Do Dogs Bury Bones?
Dogs probably get this behavior from their ancestors. As scavengers and predators, dogs did not know where or when they would find their next meal. If they had some leftovers, they buried them and saved them for later. Some animals also do this. For instance, most squirrels bury their nuts in a yard, and they are good at it.
Several scientists think burying foods underground masks the smell of this so some foragers cannot find it. There are others who believe that dirt keeps the foods cool, so it does not rot quickly. These days, if your dog lives in a multi-dog household, he might have learned to dig from other dogs as well. Or, he could be concealing his things so some of your puppies cannot get their paws on them. Several dog breeds are prone to dig, and they might tend to hide their toys and treats often than some breeds.
Dachshunds are some of the most prevalent diggers. They may have small stubby legs, yet they were bred originally to hunt the badgers in some tunneled dens, which make them excellent burrowers.