How to stop a dog from digging holes in your yard ?

@pimagro24 (1046)
October 4, 2008 2:28am CST
my dog has just recently started digging my whole yard. She has never done that before and now there is big gaping holes everywhere, what do you suggest i should do to make her stop. I fuss at her when i catch her, but she usually does it when no one is around, and then when it rains, this holes fill up with water and she rolls all around in them, making a muddy mess. I really don't want to chain her up, I like my pet to have room to run free. Other than that, she is really good but she's a big dog, and she make a big mess.
3 people like this
3 responses
• United States
5 Oct 08
I am a canine obedience trainer, I could go into a lot of detail on how to alleviate this problem, but I'll try to summarize. Since your dog has never engaged in that problem behavior before, it is probably either from hunting or boredom. Hunting would be several deep holes probably in some sort of straight line, boredom digging would be more random. Try giving your dog some things to keep him occupied, to alleviate the actual digging problem, fill in the holes and then bury either chicken wire fencing, lava rocks, or the dog's feces in the hole about an inch under the soil. Your dog will probably go back to digging in the same spots. The rocks and chicken wire are uncomfortable for the dog's paws. If he digs new holes, repeat the process. The main way to fix this problem though is to get rid of the original cause, which may be boredom. Try kong dog toys stuffed with peanut putter, you could put it in the freezer first and it will most likely occupy your dog for hours. Hope it helps.
@sharra1 (6341)
• Australia
4 Oct 08
It is not easy. What we did was shame him. We would drag him to the hole and call him a hole digger and let him no how unhappy we were about it. He would get really miserable about it. I am not sure if it will work with your dog but you can try it. The thing is to let them know how much you disapprove of what they have done and they really hate master being unhappy with them. Also for a while after we would look at him call him a hole digger and cross our arms and turn our backs. It is even better if you can catch them in the act and do the shaming ritual. The dog really hates the word hole digger now and he does understand what it means or at least that the word is linked to his digging. Our dog is 4 now and still digs the occasional hole but not very often, not very big either and usually only when he feels upset because he has not had a walk for a couple of days. We try and take him out every day but it is not always possible. I think he does it to show he is not happy with us. I am not sure.
@lilaclady (28236)
• Australia
4 Oct 08
I read once they do that because they are bored maybe if you make some toys for him like the ones he has to use his brain to get at treats or something and maybe even just give him his own little piece of ground and try to teach him to only dig there...