Training a Dog to Stop Digging

Did you just discover the hole where your flowers used to be? There are many reasons a dog likes to dig including breed, exploration, attention seeking, or wildlife in your garden. This is a guide about training a dog to stop digging.


April 14, 2009 Flag
3 found this helpful

To stop your dog digging in your garden beds, put citronella oil into a spray bottle and spray the area. Dogs hate it.

By Lorimay from Perth Western Australia

Comment On This PostWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes
April 17, 20090 found this helpful

If you live in an area where bears roam, be careful with the use of citronella oil. I have heard they really like it! Something I would check out first before I sprayed it around the yard or used it in a bug spray on the kids.

ReplyWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes
April 20, 20090 found this helpful

Wonder if it would work on the squirrels that are eating plants on my patio garden?

ReplyWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes
April 6, 20100 found this helpful

I know cats don't like the smell of oranges, so I was wondering if this would work on the garden to stop them using it for their toilet. Has anyone tried it? Jan UK

ReplyWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes
April 6, 20100 found this helpful

We have large dogs who love to dig - think I'll try this. Thanks!

ReplyWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes
April 6, 20100 found this helpful

July 27, 2010 Flag
5 found this helpful

I have 3 dogs and when I planted a shrub or a tree, the dogs would go to the new plantings and start digging it up. I started to leave the dogs indoors while I planted, so they could not see what I was doing.

Comment On This PostWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes

November 8, 2011 Flag
5 found this helpful

I have mentioned this before and it does work. This is will not keep a dog from digging, but it will keep them from digging in the same spot or spots. It sounds a little unorthodox, but it is a quick and simple solution.

Comment On This PostWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes

January 18, 2007 Flag
0 found this helpful

How do I get my 3 month old Rottweiler puppy to stop digging up my flower beds?

Photo of a puppy digging.

Comment On This PostWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes

June 5, 2010 Flag
0 found this helpful

I would like to know how to stop my dog from digging in my flower bed.

By Don

Answer This QuestionWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes
June 6, 20100 found this helpful


June 6th, 2010</em>

<dd>The decorative garden fences you can purchase at places like Home Depot or Lowes can sometimes help. If you set them up around the flowerbeds with stones or edging to keep it safe from being dug up.</dd>


ReplyWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes
June 7, 20100 found this helpful

Put his poop in the holes. Black pepper sometimes works too.


ReplyWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes
June 8, 20100 found this helpful

I put a fence up around my garden, but around trees I have put pinecones and chili pepper on top of them. I don't know that the pepper had much effect, but they have avoided the pinecones religiously. My mother-in-law put some pavers around hers, and just separating her garden from the rest of the yard helped a little. I recommend the pinecones, though.

ReplyWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes

May 5, 2009 Flag
0 found this helpful

My outside dog is digging up my yard. What can I do to stop this?

By oldladyrules from Hampton, IA

Answer This QuestionWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes
Anonymous Flag
May 8, 20090 found this helpful

Bury some of the dog's poop in the holes where he digs. That very often stops it cold.

ReplyWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes
May 12, 20090 found this helpful

You have an 'outside dog' in Iowa? Your dog is bored, so wear him out with exercise and he'll be good. I put my dog in the back of my pickup truck in the canopy and run up and down the highway, and she works herself into a frenzy back there 'chasing' cars in the oncoming lane. that is, when I'm not walking her! You do bring this dog indoors at night? into a crate maybe? I'm imagining this dog in winter, how could any dog survive it?

ReplyWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes
May 13, 20090 found this helpful

My shih tzu started digging like crazy every time he was outside. I did ALL of the "tricks" others have listed, absolutely no success. That's because there were moles/voles in the ground! Once I trapped the critters (6 in one day), no more digging. At one time, I had a Pomeranian that did the same thing, and yes there were moles at that place too. These are not aggressive/mean dogs, they just don't like critters underground!

The poop in the digging area may work for some dogs, but also remember, your pet licks its paws!

ReplyWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes

October 18, 2010 Flag
0 found this helpful

I have two large dogs; one digs out and runs off and the other stays home. The one that runs off is a Lab mix. She digs out under the fence and runs away. I am afraid that she is going to get hit by a car or picked up by the dog catcher, but we walk the fence line fix all the holes and she still always gets out.

I don't want to have to get rid of her, but she will dig under any fence and training does not matter. We have tried to train her to stay in the yard and not dig out over and over again and nothing works. Iis there anything else we can do?

By Megan from FL

Answer This QuestionWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes
October 18, 20100 found this helpful

Try laying chicken wire along the bottom of the fence. We folded it into a 90 degree angle so that we could attach it to the bottom and put the other part on the ground. You can either let the grass grow over or dig the soil up and over the bottom part. Dogs do not like to drag their claws over that stuff so they give up.

ReplyWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes

May 4, 2010 Flag
0 found this helpful

My dog is obsessed with one particular corner of our carpet. She won't stop digging. No cat has ever been here. Is there something I can spray to keep her away from it?

By Kathy from Grand Junction, CO

Answer This QuestionWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes

March 19, 2008 Flag
0 found this helpful

I have a four month old puppy that has started digging holes in the lawn. He's not digging a lot but he does have about six small ones now. Any help will be appreciated.

Betty from Fond du Lac, WI


Training a Dog To Not Dig

Some breeds are natural diggers. For example, Terriers. (03/27/2006)

By brenda thompson

Training a Dog To Not Dig

I am an obedience instructor at a dog club in Australia and one of the methods we teach is to bury a blown up balloon in the hole and cover it with the loose dirt. When the pup goes to dig there again, the balloon pops and gives him a start. Works well with most dogs. Another idea is to bury some of his own droppings in the hole. Good luck. (03/29/2006)

By Dog lover

Training a Dog To Not Dig

Found this through ArcaMax email newsletters.

How To Stop A Dog From Digging

Whenever you are trying to change any behavior in your dog the golden rule is be consistent! Make it very clear to your dog what is, and is not acceptable behavior.

Depending on the reason you believe your dog to be digging, you can apply some of these proven techniques:

  • Give your dog lots of exercise, including heaps of physical and mental stimulation.

  • If your dog is always digging in order to bury a bone, don't give bones! Substitute with chewing toys like rawhide bones.

  • Confine your dog when you can't supervise him. Place him in a crate or kennel run whenever you aren't around to spy on him. You'll need to do this until you have fixed the digging problem.

  • Blow up some balloons and bury them in the area your dog likes to dig. When he strikes a balloon, the noise of it popping startles your dog. In some cases the negative association this produces is enough to stop your dog from digging in the future.

  • If you are able to be around your dog for a couple of days, you could achieve some success with this method. Whenever your dog starts to dig, reprimand him and spray him with the hose. Again this method produces a negative association to your dog each time he digs. You must be perform this reprimand every time your dog starts digging holes.

  • If your dog has a favorite spot he likes to dig you can bury some chicken wire just under the surface of this area. When your dog starts to dig he won't like the feeling of his paws scraping along the wire. I've used this method myself and found that it worked well for my dalmation puppy.

  • This one doesn't sound very nice but is a very popular and effective way to stop your dog from digging. What you do is fill up the holes your dog has created, adding some of his poop (feces) to the filling. Most dogs are really put off by this and won't attempt to dig again. Some trainers advocate feeding your dog pineapple before performing this technique. Apparently the pineapple smells terrible when mixed with the poop.

  • Some dogs just copy what they see their owners doing. So if you're working away in the garden, suddenly your dog may be interested in doing the same! Such dogs may need to be confined while you are working in the garden.

  • If you've got the room a great solution for both you and your dogs is to provide them with a digging area. You can actually encourage your dog to dig in this designated area. Fill it with nice soft sand and bury some of your dogs favorite treats in it. Most dogs figure out that if they want to dig, they must go to this area.

  • If your dog is digging under the fence it may be worth filling in all the holes in and under the fence. This takes away the visual temptation your dog may be trying to get at.

  • If none of the above methods work for you and your dogs, you may wish to try a remote electronic training collar or e-collar. This method does work, although I realize many dog owners don't like the sound of using such a device. In reality it works the same way as many of the other techniques in that it provides a negative association to the act of digging.

  • If you take a trip down to your local Pet Shop you will find many commercial products that claim to help digging problems. They are effective for some dogs and may be worth a try.
Good luck with stopping your dog from digging, and remember that basic dog obedience training is the key to correcting any dog behavioral problems. If your dog respects and trusts you, he will be eager to please you in all situations.(04/04/2006)

By verue

Comment On This PostWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes
Pets Dogs Training AdviceNovember 4, 2011
A happy dog standing up.
Training a Dog to Stop Mounting (Humping) People
pug in a crate
Crate Training a Dog
Pug looking guilty.
Training a Dog to Poop on a Training Pad
agility training for your dog
Agility Training for Your Dog
Halloween Ideas!
Ask a Question
Share a Post
You are viewing the desktop version of this page: View Mobile Site
© 1997-2016 by Cumuli, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Published by . Page generated on October 21, 2016 at 11:00:07 AM on in 9 seconds. Use of this web site constitutes acceptance of ThriftyFun's Disclaimer and Privacy Policy. If you have any problems or suggestions feel free to Contact Us.
Loading Something Awesome!