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How to Stop a Dog from Digging Holes in Your Backyard

Having dogs in the household can sometimes get rather tedious. Dogs have their distinct personalities and behaviors that their owners have to handle. One of these behaviors involves digging holes in one’s yard.

So, what could be the exact reason why they love to make pockmarks in the garden? There are some reasons why dogs dig holes like being bored.

As digging holes is one of the dogs’ natural behaviors, there are various ways where one can minimize, if not stop, this kind of behavior. So, how can one make their pet dogs refrain from digging holes?

dog in your yard

Different Ways to Stop Your Dog from Digging

There are several ways on how to stop your dog from digging holes in the yard. You can watch some tutorials or hire a professional trainer to help you. You must, however, check to see if these two methods could work:

1. Put your dog on a leash or lock them up in a cage

This is usually the first thing that comes to mind once a dog owner gets annoyed by the behavior of their dogs. This may be the simplest way to contain them but believe me, this is not ideal.

put dog on a leash

Putting your pets on a leash or locking them inside a cage could cause more stress for your dogs. This worsens their behavior. Thus, making it harder for anyone to teach them and change the way they’re behaving.

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2. Do-it-yourself (DIY) Dog Training

This option is probably the best thing that a dog owner can do to address the behavioral issues of their dogs. Not only this would save you a chunk of your money as compared to hiring a professional dog trainer.

It would also give you a better understanding of the behavior of your pet. By spending plenty of time with them, you can rest assured that you are aware of the changes in the behavior. Your knowledge about their behavior will enable you to deal with it easily.

dog training

Step-By-Step DIY Guide to Stop Your Dog from Digging

Training or addressing your dog’s behavioral problems (in this case, how to stop your dog from digging) is not an easy task. It would surely test your patience as some of the steps are to be repeatedly done. Occasionally, depending on the dog you’re training, it could also take up a lot of time.

To begin with, the first thing you need to do is:

1. Acknowledge Your Dog’s Behavior

A. Determine your dog’s problem.

It is important that you can identify the probable reasons why your dog digs holes. This will be an essential key to being able to develop a more pleasant one.

Also, it should be acknowledged that digging holes is a dog’s innate nature which could rather be difficult to absolutely control. Depending on a dog’s breed, some dogs are likely to hunt like terriers and dachshunds.

Therefore, you must do a thorough research about a particular breed’s behavior before deciding to have a dog.

B. Give your dogs more time and TLC.

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It is tried and tested that dogs, like humans, crave and seek attention. It could be that your dog knows that digging holes and making pockmarks in your yard could gain your attention.

Should this be the case, it is suggested that you pay them no mind. Instead, give them your time for some other conduct.

Likewise, you have to assure that you spend more time with your dog. A satisfied and contented dog will apparently not seek for your attention.

Also, do not punish your dog by excluding them from your day to day activities. This will only worsen their behavior.

dog playing

Offer them different kinds of entertainment.

One of the likely reasons why your dogs are digging is because they are bored. The following could most probably kill their boredom:

  • Give them plenty of items like toys as well as offer them more time to play;
  • Take your dog out for walks or runs and even play “fetch” with them; and
  • Allow your dogs to go out with other dogs in your neighborhood as they rarely get bored when they are around other dogs.

2. Change Their Environment

A. Build makeshift sandboxes where they can freely dig.

Create sandboxes and put it somewhere in your yard. This serves as a site where they are allowed to be themselves and dig wherever they please.

If they still continue to dig anywhere else, you need to firmly command them to stop. Lead them back towards their designated digging area.

B. Get rid of creatures that your dogs love to go after.

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Some dogs are bred to hunt. Since you can never eliminate this behavior, what you need to do is to stop their prey from coming to your yard. You can do this by making a trap or making your garden less inviting to some animals.

Remember not to use any dangerous materials to get rid of such animals. These could also pose a danger to your dogs. 

Regardless of the reason behind your dog’s behavior, you should not punish your dog. Punishing them after the act will only worsen it. If it’s unavoidable, you can make a digging zone where you can train your pet for their behavior.

If you think you followed the steps above but still won’t work, you can hire a professional trainer. This is a good instructional video on how to stop your dog from digging.

C. Understanding Your Dog in Your Perspective

listen to your dog

I hope you have learned and had fun reading this article as much as I did in sharing with you some of my experiences. These steps have significantly reduced, if not stopped, my dog from this obnoxious behavior.

That’s why I can guarantee that the methods mentioned above will likely work for your dogs.

Conclusion

If you find that these steps are effective, feel free to share it with your friends. I would also love to receive some comments and feedbacks regarding this article. Feel free to share your experience and some tips not included in this article.

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