So how do you get your dog to stop digging? In this post, we’ll discuss the reasons that some dogs dig, the breeds most likely to dig, and the methods you can use to discourage the behavior.
Digging in the yard is common issue dog owners face because, for many of them, it’s instinctual behavior. Some breeds are especially prone to digging because they were originally bred for hunting.
Whether your dog is digging up your yard because of instincts or boredom, you’re probably not going to be happy about it once your yard is full of holes.
Why do dogs dig?
Dogs can dig in the yard for a variety of reasons, the most common being they’re bored or aren’t getting enough exercise and playtime.
- Excess Energy
- Comfort Seeking
- Separation Anxiety
- Hiding Possessions
- Escape or Gain Access
- Attention Seeking
- Hunting Prey
When your dog digs up the yard, it can definitely be frustrating. If you can figure out the cause of the digging, then you can take steps to stop it. Often times, it comes down to your dog having too much energy, which can mean they need more walking, exercise, playtime or toys that will help them use up energy in other ways.
How to stop dogs from digging?
If you can determine the reason your dog is digging, you’ll have a much easier time changing the behavior. You may need to try a few different things to find what works.
- Give them more exercise and playtime
- Get them more toys and new chew toys
- Grant them an area it’s okay to dig in
- Don’t leave them outside alone
- Don’t leave toys outside
- Create deterrents to digging
- Help your dog cool off
- Get rid of rodents
Exercise and playtime – These are the most common methods to get your dog to stop digging in the yard. Very often the cause of the digging is related to lack of exercise or play. Keeping your dog from getting bored and making sure they have an outlet for their energy can go a long way to stop them from digging.
Give them new toys – Your dog may need some new diversions to keep them entertained. Try offering a wide assortment of toys, such as balls, sticks, rope toys, treat-dispensing dog toys and dental chews. Rotating through an assortment of toys can help keep them from getting bored.
Don’t leave toys outside – Some dogs feel the need to bury their possessions. If you leave chew toys, bones, or playthings outside, they may dig in an effort to hide them.
Give them a place it’s okay to dig – Consider creating a space that’s intentionally designed for your dog to dig in. Let them have a spot in the yard where they know they’re allowed to dig.
Don’t leave them outside alone – Some dogs if left unsupervised in the yard will entertain themselves by digging holes. You may have to make sure they are only in the yard when they are supervised.
Create deterrents for digging – Sometimes you can come up with ways to frustrate the digging behavior of your dog, and make it so it’s not worth their effort. Things like citrus sprays, coffee grounds, vinegar and even cayenne can stop dogs from digging in problem areas.
Help your dog stay cool – Some dogs will dig because they are hot, and digging below the surface gives them cool ground to lie on. Provide other ways for them to stay cool on hot days.
What dog breeds dig the most?
These dogs are most likely to dig because at some point it was their job and the behavior was rewarded and red into them.
- Bedlington Terrier
- Cairn Terrier
- Miniature Schnauzer
- Wirehaired Pointing Griffon
- Siberian Husky
- Alaskan Malamute
- Australian Shepherd
- Border Collies
More Dog Training Information
How to Stop Your Dog from Chewing – The Pets’ Home
How to Get Your Dog to Stop Barking – The Pets’ Home
How to Get Your Dog to Stop Digging – Humane Society
How to Stop Dogs from Digging – The Spruce
7 Tips to Stop Your Dog from Digging Up the Yard – Rover
10 Dogs Breeds That Love to Dig – Petcha
The Pets’ Home offers dog training services along with our popular dog walking and dog sitting services. You can get dog shuttle service available to and from training lessons. We also aim to teach pet parents how to break their own bad habits, as well, so your dog can have consistency.