Dog is Scratching at the Carpet

A new Daschund has joined the family. He scratches the carpet and made a hole in it yesterday. Any suggestions other than finding him a new home? He does not stop when we spray him with water.

Faye from Marysville, WA

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March 6, 20090 found this helpful

When the dog does "no" and put him/her in his crate for a certain period of time. Ideally, a crate should be large enough for the dog to be able to stand up, turn around, change positions, and lay comfortably but not so large that he can play in it (or soil it at one end and still rest comfortably away from where he/she soiled). There are plenty of sites that talk about crate training dogs. Many people use the method (or their own adaptation of that method - whatever works).

Then, whenever his time is up (sort of like a time out), he is free until he does the bad behavior again, at which time you stick him back in the crate. Eventually, the dog figures out that he only gets to be free if he doesn't do that behavior. I'd also suggest putting him in the crate whenever you can't be with him (when you leave the house, when you're going to be really absorbed in something, and so on). That way, he doesn't ever get to do the bad behavior without the consequence of being isolated from you and your family. If you're diligent, it usually doesn't take long to make a positive change. If you're half-hearted about it and only put him in the crate "sometimes" then the dog gets confused and it doesn't work and isn't going to be worth trying.

Good luck. I've trained many dogs this way, and it allows me to do so without hitting them, and I rarely have to yell at them either except the sharply said "no".

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March 6, 20090 found this helpful

Dachshunds like to "nest" and love to be convered with a blanket or towel. We have a 7 year old Dachshund and whenever she wants to nap, she crawls under the throw we have on the couch. She also sleeps under the covers with my daughter every night. It's worth a try to see if that will stop your little doxie from digging a "nest". Good Luck!

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March 6, 20090 found this helpful

For this behavior I would probably treat the carpet with a stain odor remover and watch him like a hawk for a couple of days. When he does the digging thing which is instinctual, then say no or shake a can on coins to get his attention. Then give him a toy or give him a dog bed he can scratch in.

If this doesn't work, I would keep him on a leash and attach it to the couch or me or wherever you are at the time. This is intensive observing and you will control everything the dog does. A simpler way to do this same thing is to crate the dog when you cant watch him. Sometimes it is hard to figure out the motivation of a dog for what it is doing.

Does he have a lot of toys and outside play?

I know how you feel about the carpet, my ferrets ruined a part of my carpet but I didn't know they were doing it until it was too late...lol.

Let me know how it goes, and try the boundry spray to keep him away from that spot. Good Luck, racer

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March 6, 20090 found this helpful

Remember when you tell the dog no, to keep steady eye contact until He looks away. That is big with dogs. Racer

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March 7, 20090 found this helpful

NEVER, EVER use a crate as a punishment! Dogs will willingly go into a den but they do NOT understand anything beyond a 2 second correction right at the time of the behaviour.

One quick firm correction can be used for any training BUT the bulk of your training should be based on positive reinforcement; NOT negative reinforcement.

Dachshunds were bred to hunt out small animals in burrows. You can't punish a dog into going against their genetics. I would recommend a small sandbox in the backyard for the dog.

You can easily make one out of scrap lumber or they're cheap enough in the stores. Make sure you have a cover for it so your neighbor's cats don't use it as a litter box.

You can hide some toys in the sand for your dog to "hunt". You will see them light up like it's Christmas time! It's super fun for everyone and it can't cost more than $20 or so. You might even find one for free that children have outgrown.

Do use clean sand instead of digging dirt from part of your yard. You never know what bugs or bacteria are in the yard and sand will stay clean and fresh if you cover the box when not in use.

Also try an old blanket or two and use positive reinforcement to get the dog to use that area to lie down. Use a command like "bed" and lead him there with a treat. That way they can also burrow a little inside without harming anything.

If you are walking and jogging with the dog enough (at least 2-3 miles a day or 30-45 minutes twice a day after their main meals) and giving them plenty of play "hunting" time; their work is done for the day and they'll sleep like babies inside.

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March 7, 20090 found this helpful

Keep a plastic bottle full of gravel at hand. When he starts to do it, toss the bottle at him so he gets a good startle. He'll be looking at you the next time he wants to dig, and raise the bottle in your hand to show you're ready. He won't try it any more. BTW, Dachshunds are bred to run down rat holes and get the rat, that's why they are short-legged. He wants to hunt.

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March 11, 20090 found this helpful

Things have improved. Watching him like a hawk has taken care of problem so far. Thanks to everyone.

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