You dig dogs – but do you dig the holes that your dog digs in your yard? Unfortunately for many dogs, digging holes happens to be part of their behavioral make up. They don’t see digging holes as good or bad – it’s just something that they do!
Why Does My Dog Dig Diggin’ Holes?
You can pretty much bet that the first place your dog will start to dig is in your new flower bed or your newly planted garden. You are probably familiar with the saying, “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure”. This is why it is so important to stop your dog from digging right at the start or it will become an ingrained habit and will likely continue. There are numerous reasons why Fido has decided to dig up your yard or your flower beds. Perhaps he is bored and seeking attention or maybe your yard is fenced in and he’s trying to dig his way out to get to the neighbor’s dog on the other side of the fence for company. Or, maybe he’s just attracted to the smell of fresh mulched dirt or fertilized dirt. Some dogs even use holes to bury their food for consumption at a later time. Keep in mind that in the summer months – especially with very hot weather – he might be digging a hole to get to the earth deep down where it’s cooler. If temperature is the reason, make sure you dog has some shady areas to stay cool in within your yard. You may even decide to invest in a small wading pool for him. No matter what – you need to stop your dog from digging up your yard.
You can start by being consistent and discouraging the digging – and by using positive reinforcement rather than punishment. Start by rewarding your dog for good behavior -you may even try and use a distraction method. You may have to give up giving your dog chew bones for a while if your dog is one of those canines that likes to go out in the yard and bury them for later on. And, if you’re working in your garden and you know that this is a place your dog likes to dig, you may want to try putting and keeping your dog inside so that your dog does not see your digging in the dirt as an acceptable behavior in which he will follow suit. We all know how smart our dogs are and how much they love to be close by us and mimic our behaviors!
One of the best things you can do for a dog that loves to dig, is to just give in to the behavior by giving your dog his own “spot” where it is acceptable for him to dig. You can clear an approved area for him by fencing it partially or by installing a short twelve inch retaining type of wall and adding soft medium like sand for him to dig in. To encourage him and let him know that this is his “spot” to dig, you can partially bury a few favorite outdoor toys and perhaps a few biscuits in this area. Bring him to the area and encourage him by showing him the partially buried toys – when he shows interest, praise and encourage more. He will quickly get the message that this is his spot to play and dig in.
My Final Thoughts
Keep in mind that with consistent training and positive reinforcement, your dog more than likely will stop digging up your yard. Give him his own place where it’s acceptable for him to dig and reward positive behaviors and in no time your yard will go from being a hazard to an oasis!
I would love to hear your comments, feedback stories and ideas.
Scoops is a pooper scooper, dog waste clean up and pet waste clean up service located in central New Jersey – Check us out at www.ScoopaPoop.com/contact-us