Does A Dog Have To Dig?

Does your backyard look like it is filled with dusty craters that look like they belong on the moon? Do you find it nearly impossible to grow a bed of flowers or keep your yard looking neat because your dog insists on digging the place up?  Your first step in dealing with digging problems is to understand why your dog is motivated to dig.  

Be prepared to THINK LIKE A DOG and comprehend the following top ten reasons why your dog loves to dig.

1.                 It’s exciting and just feels good. Your dog gets to gratify ancient primal instincts that tell him to work those forearms and paws into a frenzy. The will to obey is just so weak in the face of such a primary drive.

2.                 There are good things to smell beneath the earth. Smelling the same thing all of the time is boring. The earth holds all kinds of secrets including what animals have been there before and what kind of food might have been there.

3.                 Digging is good exercise. It gives nervous or frustrated dogs an outlet for their nervous energy.4

.                 It gives the dog a purpose. Even dogs suffer from existentialism. Digging a hole gives a dog a goal. Hiding something in the hole is even better.

5.                 Digging triggers pleasure centers in the dog’s brain. It is comforts a dog that is hungry, frustrated, lonely or tired.

6.                 Digging is a good game. You can play it by yourself if nobody else in the house is bothering to walk you or play with you.

7.                 Digging a hole gives a hot dog a good way to cool off and way to shelter himself from the cold and wind on a stormy day.

8.                 Digging might lead to an ,escape.,   A dog may believe that if he deeps deep enough he may be able to dig himself out of the yard. This is especially true if you are finding dusty craters near your fence line.

9.                 Digging is what my ancestors did. Certain breeds, such as dachshunds and terriers may dig simply because it is part of their breed characteristic.

10.             ,Digging is what humans bred me to do., This is especially true of breeds that were bred to catch weasels, mice and snakes.   Beagles for instance instinctively feel that digging is a crucial part of their existence.  Anybody who has owned a digging dog knows that attempts to deal with it using a deterrent are almost always futile. Common deterrents are spraying the area with bitter substances, sprinkling cayenne pepper in the hole and blocking holes with boards and wire.   These are temporary solution   that often result with the dog digging a brand new hole in another place in the yard.  Perhaps one of the most troublesome types of diggers is the ,escape artist., These dogs tend to dig at the fence line. Instead of owning a dog, you often feel like you are the owner of an inmate in a prison who is constantly trying to tunnel his way out.   Of course sometimes he succeeds which means that you are left to wander all over the neighborhood looking for him. Of course there is always also the danger that he might accidentally be hurt or hurt others.  

One way to guard your fence against the ,escape artist, is to bury chicken wire all the way around the base of the fence. You can hold the segments of chicken wire down with large rocks and nail the chicken wire at the base to the bottom of the fence.