Dog Digging Problem and Solution

Turning up the earth is a great canine sport. As the dirt flies every which way, you can see ho much fun your dog is having. He’s intent on getting to the bottom of it all and doesn’t care how long it takes or how dirty he gets. Some breeds dig only when they’re young, while others tunnel all their lives.

Why Dig?
Digging gives a dog that might not have much else to do a sense of being busy. And if there’s an odor in the earth, he’ll want to find out more about it. A rodent could have tunneled far underneath and your dog will want to go after it, especially if he likes to guard his territory or he’s a terrier whose ancestors have been digging out small creatures for generations.

If he sees you gardening, he may think its okay to do the same thing and copy your behavior. To your dog, new plants smell good enough to investigate up close and personal. If it’s a hot day, a good dig can give your dog a cool place to lie. Earth provides warmth on a cold day, too. And female dogs who are about to give birth or who are going through a false pregnancy like to dig a cozy hiding place for their puppies.

How to Control Digging:
Let him know digging isn’t acceptable. It you see him working away, tell him “NO”! Then give him a toy to distract him. You’ll probably have to repeat the correction is a few times before he understands that digging is a no-no. A busy dog is less likely to dig, so take him running with you. This will burn off energy he would otherwise use to journey to the center of the earth.

To deter your dog from digging in certain place, put heavy bricks over that area place chicken wire mesh around plants or shrubs you want to protect. If this won’t stop him, give him his own digging area full of buried treasures, says Suzanne Hetts, Ph. D., an applied animal behaviorist in Littleton, Colorado.
If it’s hot outside leave a small wading pool for him to cool off in. and when the weather turns cold, make sure he has shelter or bringing inside to warm up.