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Why Dogs Dig! (and what to do about it)

If you’ve ever had a dog, then you’ve probably experienced your pet’s bad habit of digging holes in your yard. But why do dogs dig holes? Dogs can be seen digging for many reasons, but the most common are to cool off, for pleasure, or out of boredom. Let’s take a look at some of the main reasons dogs dig and how you can get them to stop the behavior before it becomes an issue!

How Your Dog Sees the World

A dog’s sense of smell is approximately 14 times stronger than a humans. A dog relies on his nose for information about everything from food to dangers to, yes, even other dogs. Your pup’s ultra-keen olfactory system allows him to gather detailed information about other animals and determine whether they pose a threat. He can also take in complex scents, such as that of an animal he knows well (like you) vs a neighboring dog.

Most Common Reasons for Digging

While there can be a lot of reasons why your dog has been digging up your garden and destroying your yard, there are most common causes for such behavior. It could be boredom, stress or just plain curiosity for some dogs, but many times it’s instinctual. Some dogs are diggers by nature, needing to dig up earth to fulfill their hunting instincts or spread-out scents from marking territory. If you have a Husky, (especially a 3 legged one named Sophie) be warned! These pups love to dig and tunnel and bring you all the flowers from your garden! There are ways you can solve these problems so that digging in garden beds will stop.

Ways to Stop Your Dog from Digging

The first step to preventing your dog from digging is to understand why they’re doing it in the first place. Some dogs dig as a sign of dominance over their territory, while others do it out of boredom or anxiety. To stop them from digging once and for all, you need to address whatever drives them to do so. The most common approaches are redirecting their attention away from a digging spot and finding an appropriate substitute activity. Landscaping can be used. Some people bury chicken wire so that when their pup digs it will hit the wire and stop. However, caution should always be used with this method as it could cut or harm your dogs paw. Always consult your vet before taking this measure.

Tips to Keep Dogs Out of the Garden

If you have a dog that’s taken to digging in your garden, there are a few things you can do to deter him. First, remove any smells he may find in your garden. Keep trash cans and bags of garbage away from potential digging sites and clean up animal waste as soon as possible. You may also want to grow plants with a scent dogs don’t like—such as lavender or citrus fruits such as lemon or orange trees—to keep them away from your flowers and vegetables.

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