Can Your Dog’s Digging Be Stopped?

Most dogs really enjoy digging around in soft dirt. You want to have a beautiful yard and a nice garden and your dog comes along and ruins it all. It is a big disaster that you can hardly keep up with. You want a nice yard but your dog wants to have fun digging around. What is the best way to handle this problem?

Dogs are natural-born diggers. Some breeds are actually bred to dig out certain prey so this digging conduct is instinctual for them. If your dog is a natural digger it may be more challenging but there are some things you can do to contain the digging.

It is important for your dog to engage his curiosity, learn about and explore his surroundings. But most people want a nice yard too. You must contain his digging or even stop it entirely if you want to keep your yard beautiful.

Digging Dog

Digging Dog

Dogs sometimes dig because they are bored. They need entertainment. He may be experiencing separation anxiety because you are away. Maybe he is trying to dig out an escape route so he can leave the yard. He may even be digging for something as simple as controlling his own temperature. He may be too hot and trying to cool off or he may be too cold and trying to warm-up.

You can get your dog to reduce or even stop his digging patterns. First make sure that he has enough time with you and gets enough exercise and playtime. You can also make sure that he has toys that he enjoys. Frequently dogs will try to bury bones so if you give your dog bones to chew on make sure you replace them with chew toys or rawhide bones.

You can also try clicker training to prevent digging. Anytime you see your dog in the act of digging use the clicker and a command that tells him “no”. Reward him when he stops digging. You will need to be consistent but clicker training can work.

You can also try to fill his hole up with undesirable things. You can fill the hole that he has been playing in with garden mulch, sticks, pine needles and so forth. When he comes back he will dig and find the undesirable things in his hole and he will stop digging. You can also bury a balloon that will pop in his face as he digs. This will not hurt him but it will scare him and he may stop the digging. Some trainers also recommend putting dog poop into the holes as the dog will no longer want to play after he finds his own poop!

You can try to make a spot in your yard specifically for his digging. This will take the most time and patience but it may be the best solution if your dog is just a natural digger. You can reduce your dogs digging behavior with some time and patience but be gentle because he is just being a dog.

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