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Baths, sprinklers, rain, puddles on the ground – if it … Learning how to stop a dog from digging in the yard doesn’t come with a quick fix. If your dog is digging up your yard, this can be super frustrating. If you take a look at the digging habits of your dog, you would realize that … After that time, re-introduce bland food such as white meat (chicken, turkey) and boiled white rice. References I put rocks, grass and dirt in there so she can't but somehow she keeps doing it. ", "It helped me because my dog always ruins my garden and messes it up. "Because I have read your articles, I now know what to do when my puppy starts digging in my garden, and I have, "The tips! There's little to lose by giving it a go, but don't be disappointed if it doesn't work. If you cannot tolerate digging in an otherwise happy dog, do not buy that kind of dog. One way to stop a dog from digging is by giving it more attention because a dog will dig to entertain itself, release physical energy, or get attention from its owner. Larger, flat rocks work best, as they're the hardest to move aside. How do I stop a chocolate Labrador/Staphie cross from digging? Below is a list of the most common reasons your dog may be digging: He simply likes to dig!. Dogs learn from each other and they learn from us. They will dig holes in the yard because it gives them something to do to pass the time. Teach your dog basic commands such as "Stop," "Sit," "Heel," etc. Dogs won’t dig where they poop, so just shovel the poop from your yard into the hole, and put some dirt over top of it. I don't recommend onions as a method of repelling them. The moment you see your dog paw at the ground to initiate digging, interrupt him. Thanks. Have you ever tried cutting your dogs nails? Some of it is instinctual and some results from years of breed development. Practice these tricks once a day for 10 minutes. Provide entertainment with toys and play time, especially if the dog is young and doesn't have any other outlets. Last Updated: December 27, 2020 Beverly Ulbrich is a Dog Behaviorist and Trainer and the Founder of The Pooch Coach, a private dog training business based in the San Francisco Bay Area. This article has been viewed 1,396,681 times. If you catch your dog digging, ignore the behavior, and when it's finished digging, block off the area so that it can’t get to the hole. Just look at all these funny and hilarious digging techniques! It can get frustrating when they dig holes in the yard you’ve worked so hard to maintain. If this is the only circumstance in which your dog is digging, there are a few ways in which you can stop him. Dog owners may notice that their back or front yard is beginning to look more crater-like in nature, with mounds of dirt next to the formed holes. Use citrus peels to guard the area. They only have to touch it once. How to stop dogs from digging, in this case, is you could try digging a larger hole for them in an acceptable location in the yard and try and motivate them to dig only thereby burying treats for them to find. % of people told us that this article helped them. A tired dog is all you really need to stop the digging. When everything is done properly, your dog should show deeper respect for you and remember all the commands taught at the training. Hound dogs … How to Stop Dogs from Digging Holes. Furthermore, canine experts affirm that digging is a natural adaptive behavior seen in the wild. Additionally, make sure your dog has plenty of time with you on other occasions. Some primitive-type breeds who love to dig for the joy of digging include Australian Cattle Dogs and the Portuguese Podengo Medio (new to America). Without being seen, create a loud noise (for instance, with a soda can with several coins inside) that will distract the dog. Can you use cayenne pepper to stop a dog from digging? To learn how to stop dogs from digging holes it is crucial to determine the reason why your puppy or older dog is digging in the first place. Your dog lives in your home and must play by your rules. Many dogs fail to use only the sandbox (in the sandbox method). In hot weather, dogs may dig holes to lie in the cool dirt. He is the co-founder of Canine Journal and his first dog was a Dalmatian named Domino. If your dog is digging random holes throughout the yard, he or she is most likely smelling or hearing something underground and trying to get to it. (Basically, "If you can do it, why can't I?"). Boredom or anxiety relief: Digging is often great fun for a dog and provides mental and physical stimulation, so it's a natural outlet for relief of boredom or anxiety such as separation anxiety Burial of possessions: Many dogs feel compelled to bury their toys or chews.If you allow your dog to bring toys or chews outside, it may dig holes in an effort to hide them. Natural Instinct – Some dogs have been bred for this purpose so it is their natural instinct to dig holes. Depending on the reason above, you need to take different approaches to get your dog to stop digging holes in your yard. Digging holes is a natural trait for dogs, with over eighty percent of dog owners in the USA reporting that their dog likes to dig. Please follow the directions provided by the manufacturer or service provider when using any product or service reviewed or discussed on this website. Instead of getting upset at your pup, consider why he or she might be making a minefield out of your backyard. Consider. We use cookies to make wikiHow great. Why do dogs suddenly start digging holes? Your dog may have a digestive disease or a medical disorder that requires prompt professional treatment. Onion toxicity can cause the red blood cells circulating through your pet's body to burst. Prevent escapes by folding 3 feet (0.9 m) wide chicken wire fence and attaching it to the fence along the ground (with two feet of the fencing on the ground). Your dog may be digging for protection or comfort if: The holes are near the foundations of large shade trees, buildings, or a water source. They may beescaping something they fear— neighborhood dogs or natural events such as thunderstorms. Let your dog socialize with other dogs. dog digging holes to cool down is led by natural instincts. Dog boots are the perfect idea, because they are very strong and slow the digging process. and bring her over to the designated digging area where she can dig in peace. Our review process. Some Dogs are Bred for Digging Holes Terriers, Dachshund, Beagles and Schnauzer are all infamous diggers simply because they have been bred to chase small animals through their tunnels and dens in the ground so by instinct, digging is what they do best. Create a Larger Hole for Your Pet. This mucky pup loves to dig holes in his garden, especially when it's rained! This unpleasant noise will become associated with digging. The wire on the dog's feet will feel uncomfortable. I think I now know why, and this has given me ideas on how to get her to stop. Fill the hole back in, and add discouragements (see above) as needed. She has also been featured on TV as a dog behavior expert. Your dog may just seeking your attention. For many, this is boredom due to lack of exercise, so correcting the problems means increasing mental and physical exercise for the dog. Our youngest and oldest dogs both were digging holes to China and back, and we finally just covered the narrow dog run area which was supposed to have grass planted but clearly wasn’t going to happen effectively, so we bought indoor/outdoor green put put golf like carpet and tacked it down both sides wuth metal stakes, and that pretty much ended holes to china from our two dogs. By signing up you are agreeing to receive emails according to our privacy policy. If you have a dog, odds are your canine friend has dug his share of holes in your yard. Hindering dogs from carrying out their natural, predisposed functions is not good for their health and well-being. Sign up to Receive our Free Dog Guide E-Book and Monthly Newsletter! If you use the dog feces method, use your dog's own feces; the waste from another dog will not work. To sustain this free service, we receive affiliate commissions via some of our links. Exercise your dog vigorously with walks or runs. If you are working in your garden, remove fresh dirt from your dog's reach with a fence or covering. However, it's debatable whether this works or not. Could I use dog boots on the front paws to stop digging? They may be long and is a reason why your dog is digging up everything you put down. Because if there’s one thing that’s frustrating as hell, it’s a dog that starts randomly digging holes for no apparent reason. Now, there are literally … However, when you’ve invested time and money into making your garden a thing of beauty, it isn’t easy to sit back and let the holes … She is a Certified CGC (Canine Good Citizen) Evaluator by the American Kennel Club and has served on the Board of Directors for the American Humane Association and Rocket Dog Rescue. ", "The one w/the balloon in the dirt was the best.". To make it even worse, once they dig one hole, some dogs get in the habit of hole digging and turn your yard into a battlefield. Pest Prevention. If your hound dog is digging because of boredom, try either giving them a new toy or more exercise. Thanks to all authors for creating a page that has been read 1,396,681 times. Dogs often dig holes for one (or more) of these five reasons: entertainment, physical comfort, attention-seeking, escape, or prey-seeking. Don't let your dog outside without adequate protection in cases of extreme heat or cold. The most important thing to confirm is that your dog is well taken care of. Line the fence with partially-buried rocks that block progress. Dogs digging to hide extra food Dogs will also sometimes hide surplus food, so if they are given a large chew toy or bone to gnaw on for example, they will dig a hole to put it in when they have temporarily had enough. Watch when, where, and how your dog digs, and you can probably determine why he digs. Unlike humans, dogs don’t have the will to be ill-intentioned, and in the case of digging holes in your backyard they are following a natural instinct or learned behavior that, while annoying to you, is out of survival or need for them. ", "Never thought to use orange peels. Alex holds BS degrees in Management Science from the University of California at San Diego, and Computer Science from the New Jersey Institute of Technology. Forget the television stars and go for the real trainers whose books have stood the test of time. Punishing your dog for digging by banishing her from your presence is likely to only exacerbate the behavior. In addition to digging holes, dogs may like to eat dirt too. Peel an orange or get some orange juice on your hand and bring your hand up to the dog's nose. In other words, dogs are going to dig holes, for one reason or another, and you shouldn’t put too much effort into how to stop dogs digging. The dog will dig a hole, place the treats or toys in the bottom, and replace the dirt. Walk your dog at least twice a day, and consider playing fetch with a tennis ball launcher to really get him tuckered out. To save food; Dogs, like in the wild, have the desire to save some food for later. ", "To stop digging, pour 1 cup of ammonia where digging. Also, most terriers love digging and should be allowed to do so, as long as they cannot escape. By using this service, some information may be shared with YouTube. In classic “dig your way out of prison” fashion, they are attempting to escape the yard. Yes, they do; however, if you give a Lab plenty of exercise and mental stimulation, it helps prevent excessive digging born out of boredom. The unpleasant surprise when the dog pops the balloon will take away some of the dog's digging pleasure. Restrict entry to the yard. Will onion peels prevent my dog from digging in certain spots? Shelter: in hot weather, dogs may dig holes to lie in the cool dirt. Your pup will go elsewhere. Is your dog the only one making disturbances in the turf? Some dogs have been bred to dig; terriers and dachshunds, for example, were bred to hunt badgers. But most importantly, you should realize that digging is a normal doggie trait. It depends on the dog. If she backs away or is anxious, you know it's fair game. Provide your dog with the comfort or protection he seeks by providing your dog with a comfortable doghouse that affords protection from wind and sun. However, there are many dogs who eat their poop and will gladly see this as you burying their favorite treat. Digging can also be part of a nesting instinct. If you catch your dog digging in an non-designated area, firmly say "No digging!" Make sure they are getting enough food, but not too much (or they may dig a hole to hide the left-overs ;), and make sure they are kept in an appropriately climate-adjusted environment. These are all things you need to check off your list as a responsible dog owner before attempting to find fault in your dog’s behavior and to stop dog from digging. At first, you may think that you’ve got to do whatever you can to stop your dog from digging holes in the yard. This article was co-authored by Beverly Ulbrich. Implement the calm, assertive approach used in basic training and your dog should see you as the leader of the pack. Anxiety … He will dig to bury his leftovers only to retrieve it later. Disclaimer: This website contains reviews, opinions and information regarding products and services manufactured or provided by third parties. Cement also works well to fill holes near the fence (pour in dry, then add water to cement-filled hole, do not allow dog in yard while it is hardening). There’s no point trying to deny their instincts. ", "Just very helpful information about having animals. Try to figure out why the dog is digging. She has been voted the best private dog trainer in the San Francisco Bay Area 4 times by SF Chronicle and by Bay Woof, and she has won 4 "Top Dog Blog" awards. Dogs are almost never bored when there are other dogs around. This article has been viewed 1,396,681 times. Your dog lies in the holes they dig. My dog keeps digging in the same area. ", http://www.humanesociety.org/animals/dogs/tips/digging.html, http://www.petful.com/behaviors/stop-dog-digging-yard/, https://www.cesarsway.com/dog-behavior/obsessive-behavior/getting-a-dog-to-stop-digging, http://pets.webmd.com/dogs/guide/why-dogs-dig-what-you-can-do?page=4. This article received 11 testimonials and 86% of readers who voted found it helpful, earning it our reader-approved status. Why Do Dogs Dig Holes? To an extent, you probably should just accept some amount of digging as part of owning a dog. Young puppies absorb information from their mothers long before their eight-week birthday. Punishing dogs directly is usually considered ineffective. Use wooden beams or low fencing to define the sandbox and fill it with freshly tilled earth. She is a Certified CGC (Canine Good Citizen) Evaluator by the American Kennel Club and has served on the Board of Directors for the American Humane Association and Rocket Dog Rescue. They may also dig to provide themselves with shelter from cold, wind or rain or to find water. Go out and dig up any bones or other things your dog has buried. Many dogs know by instinct that prey can be underground. The most common items that get stashed are long-lasting chews, such as bones, antlers, yak cheese chews, bully sticks, and dental chews. How can I stop my puppy from lifting his leg in the house to pee? Every time your puppy has lunch dinner or breakfast take him outside for about 15 minutes Yes. Luckily, once you figure out why your dog is digging holes, you can start to work on stopping him. This usually works best near the fence (see Tips, below). Here’s a video from the Santa Fe Animal Shelter about why they do it and some tips on how to get dogs to stop, including using deer repellent crystals. Out ofboredom or lacking adequate exercise In classic “dig your way out of prison” fashion, they are attempting to escape the yard. Dog Digging Holes is a normal behavior for dogs. Dogs become bored just like you and I do if they aren’t occupied or mentally stimulated. Include your email address to get a message when this question is answered. Bury chicken wire underneath the bottom border of the fence. Our Expert Agrees: If you're having a problem with your dog digging, try giving them a place where it's okay for them to dig. Even then, a dog’s behavior often has a natural source. Consider enrolling yourself and your dog in a basic training class. If your dog continues to dig, consider enrolling it in a basic training class to learn how to respond to commands, which will make controlling its behavior easier. My suggestion is to put a net on top of the rocks, that way your dog won't be able to reach. If your dog is digging because they are stressed or feel threatened, it’s … According to a national survey1, more than 83% of American dog owners have dogs that dig holes. Bury a small inflated balloon in the dog's hole and cover it with a layer of dirt. Onions contain an ingredient called thiosulphate which is toxic to cats and dogs. Start by accompanying your dog whenever he goes out into the yard. First, you can dig a larger hole for him to play in somewhere … Your dog may be digging for comfort or protection if: The holes are near the foundations of buildings, large shade trees or a water source. Remove attractive smells. The idea behind cayenne pepper is that the smell is repellent or else it makes the dog sneeze when he sniffs around prior to digging. Keep your garden clean. First, you should know that digging is a normal and instinctive behavior for dogs, especially Labradors. Answering the question, “Why do dogs dig holes?” can be as simple as instinctual. In addition to digging holes, our canine friends have many more habits that are somewhat curious and maybe even a little gross to us humans. Bury the fence even deeper into the ground. She has been voted the best private dog trainer in the San Francisco Bay Area 4 times by SF Chronicle and by Bay Woof, and she has won 4 "Top Dog Blog" awards. Dogs are scavengers and wild animals that still retain their instincts. They may also dig to provide themselves with shelter from cold, wind, or rain or to find water. Approved. 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