Stop Dog From Digging Under Fence

Last Update:

A dog can dig a hole under the fence, quickly turned into a small pool. Digging is entirely normal for dogs. But why do dogs dig the ground, and how to wean a dog from digging? In this article, we will discuss these two things. 

Why do dogs dig under a fence?

Digging is a natural behavior for a dog. This is precisely what his ancestors did on many occasions. But in modern living conditions, the ability to conduct excavations is not always pleasant to the owners. And to understand how to stop a dog from digging, you need to know why he is digging the ground.

There may be several reasons:

The hunting instinct

This is especially true for “burrowing” dogs: dachshunds and small terriers. And your pet has likely smelled “game” (for example, a mouse or a mole) and tried to get it.


If you do not pay enough attention to the dog, do not offer optimal physical and intellectual activity, there is not enough variety in the dog’s life, he will seek entertainment on his own. And digging holes, in this case, is quite a noteworthy occupation for a dog.

I am trying to cool off in the heat. 

Dogs in the heat “open” the topsoil to lie on the cold ground and cool down.

Creation of strategic reserves 

You gave your dog a treat, but she decided to save it for a rainy day for some reason. How else to hide the treat, if not in the ground? And then, perhaps, consider that the place was not chosen well enough, and hide it.

An attempt to escape 

Digging under a fence is a very effective way to get freedom if the dog cares about it. You do not provide enough walks, or a beautiful object has appeared behind the fence – for example, a bitch for a dog.


Dogs are curious animals that learn about the world around them and receive information from smells. Many gardeners use organic matter, meat, and bone meal for fertilization, and it is this smell attracts dogs.

Lack of vitamins

The pet can also be attracted by what grows in the ground. For example, a dog digs the ground in search of edible roots or root crops. It is possible that the dog lacks specific vitamins and minerals and thus makes up for their deficiency.

Stop Dog From Digging Under Fence

Before training, it is necessary to determine the cause of this behavior. These are some techniques to Stop Dog From Digging Under Fence: 

Install low fence

First of all, do not allow your dog to walk in flower beds. To prevent an inquisitive pet from invading the garden or flower beds, install low fences from any available material.

The dog can see the border, which cannot be entered, put some obstacles in front of the beds, such as boards, metal mesh, an old hose, and large stones. Several times a day, make a joint walk, walk near fenced areas, praise your pet for good behavior.

As soon as the dog decides to dig a hole or decides to walk through the flower beds, call out to the dog and give a forbidden command in a stern tone. Suppose the dog is obedient, reward with approval, or yummy. As a punishment, as soon as the dog starts digging the ground, use harsh sounds, such as pops and Fisher’s discs. You can also spray your dog with water from a spray bottle or use a hose.

The surprise effect works great on a naughty pet.

In some cases, it is permissible to use a slingshot (many use electric vibration collars ), but consult a dog handler or specialist before using them. If you cannot eradicate the addiction, you have a hunting dog, equip your pet with a particular area where he can dig the ground, and dig holes to his satisfaction.

To attract your pet to the desired location, dig a shallow hole and place a bone in it. This will attract your pet and add excitement to dig precisely in this place. If the dog starts digging the ground in the wrong place, scold the dog and take it to a place specially equipped for this purpose.

Help to wean dogs from digging holes

  • intense physical activity;
  • systematic training, classes with a dog handler;
  • long active walks;
  • attention, the presence of various interactive toys;
  • communication with other dogs;
  • destruction of sources of temptation;
  • destruction of rodents living on the site;
  • creation of a personal area for a pet (you can equip a sandbox);
  • providing a relaxed, comfortable shelter.

Physical activities and moderate exercise will allow the dog to release excess energy. The dog will stop feeling lonely and will not dig out of boredom. Overly energetic dogs can be interested in agility, sports competitions, sledding, or the new dog scooter trend. 

Put a pool near the fence. 

In the summer, on hot days, put a pool on the site where the dog can swim, periodically moisten the fur with cool water, and hose the dog over. Place an aviary, a booth in the shadiest, most relaxed place, or equip a comfortable recreation area for the pet under the crown of trees or a canopy. Keep your garden and area clean. Remove all sources of temptation, for example, bones, treats, scattered in the yard. Eliminate rodents.

Don’t let the dog watch you while working in a garden. 

When working in the garden vegetable garden, do not let the dog watch you. Dogs not only love to dig in the cultivated land but also often imitate their owners. If you have a hunting dog, release the dog from the house or enclosure, continually monitoring its behavior. If the dog engages in excavation, give a strict command “Fu” or “No.”

Tips and tricks

If you still cannot solve the problem, you can resort to a little trick by setting traps for your pet.

Take the dog to the house so that he cannot observe your actions. Dig several holes of varying depths in the area and place an inflated balloon and treat, such as a bone, in them, or use other repellents available at pet stores.

Release the dog and observe his reactions and actions. A bursting balloon will scare the pet and help wean it from the addiction. Use this method several times until the dog has no desire to dig tunnels and dig holes in the area.

  • Fill the area with stones, pebbles, cover the plantings with a garden net, install automatic water sprinklers with built-in sensors that react to movements.
  • Citrus skins or other dog-repellent odors can be used to protect lawns.
  • If all else fails, seek professional help. The dog handler will select the best method for weaning your pet and instill in the dog the right behavioral skills.

Bottom Line 

When weaning your dog from digging holes, be patient. Only the right approach to education, constant control, consistency, and perseverance will solve this problem.

Leave a Comment