Dogs are instinctive animals and, as such, some of the behaviour that they exhibit may prove to be frustrating. If your dog is making short work of your garden and leaving it resembling the surface of the Moon, don’t despair – there are some steps that you can take before resorting to paving the whole thing over.
Buddhists have a saying – ‘to understand is to forgive’. So, why does your dog have the impulse to wreck your garden? His digging may be the result of a predatory urge, or an instinct to hide any food from other dogs and predators. Digging may be part of a nesting instinct, especially if your dog is expecting pups, and certain breeds, such as Terriers, are predisposed to it. Your pooch may dig because he is bored, or if he’s digging under a fence, just wants to get out.
So, what can you do about it? The first thing to do is to identify the reasons for his behaviour. It may be that he is trying to chase other animals – next door’s cat, for example. If this is the case, you may have to put an obstacle in his way; if he can’t see them, he’ll be less inclined to chase them.
A more common cause is that he has too much pent up energy, and he’s merely trying to expend it. You may find that if you take him for longer walks and have more playtime with him, he’ll be too tired to ruin your well-manicured lawn.
It’s probably a good idea you don’t let him watch The Great Escape any time soon though, that’ll just give him ideas.
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