How To Stop A Dog From Digging?


Dogs are really nice to be with, as the cliché has been saying, ‘Dogs are man’s best friend’ but what if your pet has suddenly been doing some unexpected behaviour that he or she has never done before, like digging a hole in your yard and has been making craters everywhere. Don’t panic because there are some ways on how to stop a dog from digging more holes that can cause some disturbance on your lawn. To be able to stop dogs from digging, the owner must first know the cause of such situation. Most likely, the dogs just wanted to have some comfort or protection from their owner, escape to search some other dogs that they want to mate or want to play with, catch prey, want attention or entertainment. These are some of the common causes of dogs who love to dig some holes on the lawn.


1. Entertainment

They usually do this action because when they dig, they feel like the roots and soil respond. The dog may need some entertainment if he has been left alone in the lawn for a long period of time without any human affection or another dog’s company. Another reason is a dull environment that has no toys and has no chance for outlet. The breed of the dog may also affect the digging attitude because some breeds are just bred to dig like terriers. Oftentimes, the dog is just an active dog and digging is one of the ways to make him or her happy. On the other side, if the dog has seen his or her owner digging in the lawn and has been doing some gardening, the dog may make a way to imitate the owner and play with the dirt as well.


If this is one of the reasons that the dog has been digging on the owner’s yard then the owner must increase the time that he or she has been with the dog. The owner can walk the dog at least twice every day. If the dog has not been getting enough exercise, the dog may have behavioural problems. If the dog is just naturally active then try to divert the attention of the dog by doing other activities such as teaching the dog on how to fetch a stick, flying disk or ball, playing with the dog as often as possible for them to feel the affection that they need from their owner. Another way to give the dog some entertainment is by teaching the dog some more tricks and make it perform at least 5 to 10 minutes every day. The owner and the dog can also attend a class that gives training for dogs so that the dog can also meet some other dogs while they are having a training class. Also, if there is a little time for the owner to do such things that have been mentioned, then the owner can at least give some interesting toys with some treats to the dogs to keep them busy. Give them rotating toys so that the pet can play on its own.

2. Hunting A Prey

Some dogs often dig a hole in the yard because they might be trying to catch some other insects or animals that may be living in the yard. The owner may know that this is the cause if the dog is focused on just one area rather than the other parts of the yard. The dog is only digging on the roots of shrubs, trees or some other plants and the dog is digging as if following a certain path.  


If the signs mentioned above have been seen on the owner’s yard, then most probably the dog is digging because he or she is trying to hunt a prey. To be able to get rid of this case, the owner can put on a fence on the place where the dog has been always digging or make the area unattractive to dogs. Do not ever put some insecticide on the area that the dog has been digging because they are toxic and can even poison the dog at the same time. 

3. Comfort Or Security

For countries that have hot weather, dogs often dig holes to be able to lie down in the dirt because it is cooler. The dogs may also be digging some holes as a security or shelter from cold weather, wind or rain or to be able to find some water. The dog may lack comfort or security if they dig holes that are near the base of buildings, huge shade trees or a place where water can be seen. The dogs follow this pattern if they don’t have a house or to seek protection from the sun, rain or cold winds.


If this is the main problem on why the dogs kept on digging holes then you can stop the dogs from digging by providing them what they need. Bring the dog in the house more often to give them some relief from very hot or cold weather. Be certain that the dog is very comfortable on their doghouse and the place is secured from any wind or sun. Always give the dog some fresh water that cannot be tipped over.

4. Attention

If the dog lacks some attention from their owner, they usually dig a hole to attract the owner’s attention. If the dog is digging holes when the owner is around or when he has limited opportunities to have some time with the owner then they surely are digging holes because they lack some attention. 


It is good not to punish the dogs when they are doing such behaviour, just ignore the dog and always give the dog praise for good behaviour next time. Be certain that the dog has enough time with the owner every day. Walk the dog, play games with them or interact with the dog as often as possible.

Always remember that there are some reasons that a dog may be acting strange like digging holes. To be able to stop those dogs from digging find the cause and then from that reason do some of the interventions that have been mentioned above.