How To Keep A Dog From Digging

Some dogs just loooooove to dig.  Dig dig dig, everywhere and for everything.  Sometimes it’s to hide or stash something, sometimes it’s to look for or chase after prey, at times it is to try and get past a barrier, and other times they just do it for fun.  They don’t do it because they are mad at you, or to destroy things…some dogs just love to dig.  Because dogs dig for so many different reasons, it is important to find out why they are digging first, so you can take an appropriate training action that is specific to your individual dog.  So, how to keep a dog from digging ?

How to Stop a Dog from DiggingThe most common reason dogs dig is for fun, or more likely because they are bored.  The dirt is there to dig, and they have the paws to dig it.  If your dog is digging for a good time, they are probably spending too much time at home alone, or just don’t have enough to do (like play with other dogs or toys).  Digging is especially common in puppies, and extra especially common if they don’t have anything else to do, as they have way too much energy and an intense need to use it.  Some breeds, like Terriers, have actually been bred to dig.  Dogs can also learn how to dig from humans. For instance, if they see you out gardening in the yard digging something up.  If they do this, make sure they get some more exercise, and teach them to play some games (like Fetch or Frisbee).  Keep toys around the yard for your dog to play with when you are not home.  Or try some dog sports, and give them an activity!  Remember, a tired dog is a well-behaved dog!

Another basic instinct that dogs have is the instinct to hunt prey.  If you have animals that burrow and live in your yard (like moles), your dog may try to catch them; and if they have a den that means digging.  If they are digging in a random but specific area, or near the roots of trees or bushes.  If they are doing this and digging up your yard, it is best to find the root cause of the problem and get rid of the animal before they dig up your yard trying.  Another common reason dogs will dig is for comfort or protection.  In the hot sun, a dog will usually dig up a layer of dirt and lie down because the soil underneath is much cooler.  Likewise, they will also dig to get shelter from rain or cold.  If your dog is doing this, you should provide them with more adequate shelter.  Some dogs, though, just love to dig.  It can be very helpful for some dogs to actually get a dedicated digging spot, where they can dig all they want!