If you have a digging dog, chances are you’re fed up with the destruction going on in your yard or garden, and possibly even in your home.
Not only is digging disastrous, but it’s also messy and may even be dangerous for your dog, especially if he’s digging beneath fences or near power lines.
Unfortunately, digging can be difficult to stop, especially if your dog is a dog breed that is more prone to digging than other dogs. The good news is that there are safe and effective digging repellents you can purchase to help eliminate digging behaviors while also keeping your dog protected.
But before we talk about the best dog digging repellent products we recommend, let’s talk more about your dog and why he just can’t seem to stay out of the dirt!
Why Do Dogs Dig?
Digging is a natural behavior in many dogs.
Dogs dig for a number of reasons, whether they are bored, looking to find a cool place to lay down, looking to hide toys or food, or digging for comfort.
Dachshunds, for example, were once known as Badger Dogs and were bred to dig baggers out of their dens for hunting purposes.
While digging might be a nuisance to you, the American Kennel Club actually has a place for digging dogs in the show ring, offering a safe place for these dogs to compete in digging.
If your dog does love to dig, you might consider offering him his own safe place in your yard or garden where he can dig freely and get it all out of his system. You can also invest in toys that help satisfy your dog’s digging instinct like snuffle mats or toys that encourage foraging.
However, for those areas around your home or yard that you want to protect, it’s best to invest in the best dog digging repellent.
What Is Dog Digging Repellent?
Many dog digging repellents use natural products to deter dogs like the scent of peppermint.
A dog digging repellent is exactly what it sounds like – it is a product designed to help stop your dog from digging.
When dogs dig, they tend to do so in the same areas around the home or yard. This means you will easily be able to see a pattern your dog has established and you can use this to your advantage when it comes to utilizing the best dog digging repellent to stop the unwanted behavior.
Dog digging repellents can come in many forms, including scent repellents, sound repellents, noise repellents, and even motion-activated repellents. Some of the best dog digging repellent products also include dog-proof fencing that keeps your dog out of certain areas of your yard or garden.
While even the best-digging repellent products can be effective, they can also be somewhat controversial. The reason is that many types of the best dog digging repellent products use sounds, smells, or motions that may irritate or startle your dog.
With that said, digging can be a dangerous pastime for your dog, and using the best dog digging repellent is often necessary to help protect your dog and your property.
Still, we do recommend using the best dog digging repellent with caution, and we also suggest implementing other tools like proper training, exercise, mental stimulation, and toys to help reduce digging behaviors, which we will discuss further down.
For now, let’s take a look at some of the best dog digging repellent products recommended by experts below.
What To Look For In The Best Dog Digging Repellent
Look for dog digging repellents that are safe for use in gardens and most importantly safe for your dog and other pets.
When looking for the best dog repellent, you want to exercise caution and care. Remember, not all digging repellents are made equally and some may be gentler or even safer for your dog than others.
If your dog is digging due to anxiety, you want to avoid a dog digging repellent that is going to cause more stress or anxiety like a noise repellent or spray repellent. We should also note here that there are homemade repellent products you can use to stop your dog from digging, but you should be careful of using ingredients that could be harmful to your dog such as garlic, ammonia, or coffee.
Instead, we suggest investing in the best dog repellent products below that are designed to be used to keep dogs from digging and are therefore considered safer.
Take a look.
Zone Store No Holes Dog Digging Repellent
First on our list of best dog repellent products is a product called No Holes by the Zone Store. This dog repellent comes in a spray form and includes a trigger sprayer that can cover up to 2,000 square feet outdoors.
The product works to help both dogs and cats stop digging, and works using an all-natural formula that is safe for dogs and for your yard and garden.
The repellent uses an odor that deters our dogs safely and masks other odors in your yard or garden that might be attractive to your dog and that might entice him to dig in certain areas.
Home & Garden Dog Mace
With a name like Dog Mace, you might be hesitant to use this product or wonder why we have included it on our list of the best dog digging repellent. While the name does sound a bit extreme, the product is actually 100% safe for dogs and uses peppermint oil as the main ingredient to deter them.
Peppermint oil will not harm your dog, but the scent is repulsive to them and is also quite strong, so it can cause slight irritation to their sensitive noses if they get too close.
With that said, the product is perfectly safe to use not only around your pets but also around children and pets, so it’s great for stopping your dog from digging in gardens.
Scat Mat Prickle Strips Digging Repellent
Though this spiky mat may look scary, it is actually one of the best dog digging repellent products because it stops your dog from digging without the use of sprays, odors, or chemicals. It is actually not really spiky at all, as the “spikes” are simply just soft PP material that will irritate your dog but not scratch or harm him.
The product is easy to use as well, as you need to lay the mat flat in areas around your yard and garden where you want your dog to stop digging. It includes a cable tie to help secure it to areas and hold it in place and is safe to use both indoors and outdoors.
NaturVet Off Limits Pet Training Spray
Last on our list of the best dog digging repellent is a product by NaturVet. This is a training spray that is made with natural ingredients including herbal extracts that can be used both inside and outside to help stop your dog from digging and also keep him away from areas in the yard and home you don’t want him or that are unsafe.
The product is a non-staining liquid spray that comes in a 32-ounce spray bottle. It not only helps stop digging behaviors but can also stop your dog from chewing and scratching at furniture and clothing.
THe spray is non-toxic and safe to use around both dogs and cats.
Other Products You Can Use To Help Redirect A Digging Dog
Keeping your dog mentally stimulated with the proper toys can help redirect his digging behaviors.
Not all digging repellent products are as straightforward as you think, and in fact, you may be able to help stop your dog from digging as much by simply offering him the right kinds of toys that tap into his natural instinct while also saving your garden or furniture from his wrath.
We’ve listed some of the best toys and products you can invest in to help redirect digging behavior in your dog to something safe and less destructive.
Take a look.
RundA Snuffle Mat For Dogs
Snuffle mats like the RoundA Snuffle Mat listed above can be used as a safe alternative to digging and can help keep your dog mentally stimulated while also serving as a slow feeder.
The product works when you hide treats or food inside the material, and your dog is then encouraged to use his natural instincts to sniff them out.
If you catch your dog digging, you can use the best dog digging repellent products above to help keep him away from areas in your home or garden he should not not be digging in, and then redirect his behavior by giving him a snuffle mat to safely dig and forage through.
Gorilla Playsets Sandbox
If your dog is a natural digger but there’s no place safe in your yard or garden for him to dig, you might consider using one of the best dog digging repellent products above to protect him and then investing in a sandbox.
Any child’s sandbox will do, but we like the above Gorilla Playsets Sandbox above because it is made with wood and other sturdy materials that your dog won’t destroy as easily as he might a plastic sandbox.
While sandboxes are great ways to help keep your dog mentally stimulated, it’s important to make sure you supervise your dog while he is playing in a sandbox and that you also take care to train him as to where the appropriate places to dig and to not dig are around your home and yard.
The classic KONG chew toy is a must-have for any dog toy box whether or not your dog is a digger. These toys can be filled with treats or dog-safe peanut butter, or even KONG filler you can purchase at your local store to help keep your dog busy and mentally stimulated while you are away.
Remember, many dogs dig out of boredom, so along with investing in the best dog digging repellent products listed above, ensuring that your dog has the proper toys to keep him busy is essential to ensure he is healthy and happy.
Digging Dogs – How To Help Keep Your Dog From Digging
Training your dog can help rescue digging, but so can proper exercise and mental stimulation.
A digging dog could mean a yard riddled with holes. It could also mean a messy house where dirt and mud are tracked in often, or even ruined carpets, bedding, or furniture.
Though digging is a common behavior in many dog breeds and mixes, it can be destructive and costly for owners, and even dangerous for your dog.
Along with investing in the best dog digging repellent products listed above to help stop your dog from digging, there are other ways you can help reduce the behavior and ensure your dog is happy.
First, Get To Know Your Dog’s History
If you have a dog that digs, you may think he’s digging for no reason when in fact, many digging dogs are simply following their instinct.
Remember, some dogs are naturally more prone to digging behaviors than others. The most common breeds known for digging include but are not limited to dogs like Dachshunds, Beagles, Bedlington Terriers, Wirehaired Pointers, Border Collies, Siberian Huskies, Cairn Terriers, Malamutes, Australian Shepherds, and Miniature Schnauzers.
Many of these dogs and dogs mixed with the above breeds have working histories that make them more prone to digging behaviors than other dogs.
In order to best reduce problematic behaviors in your dog like digging, it’s important to have a better understanding of your dog’s digging and of his working history.
This way, if you know your dog is naturally prone to digging, you can help satisfy this instinct by offering him safe alternatives to digging.
If your dog is not naturally prone to digging, you may want to look into other reasons he is exhibiting this behavior.
For example, if your dog is bored, digging could be a means of occupying himself. If this is the case, it’s important to take measures to reduce this boredom. Boredom could lead to other destructive behaviors as well like excessive barking, chewing, and marking.
Worse, it could lead to anxiety and stress in your dog, which can lead to a weakened immune system and may even shorten his lifespan.
The best way to eliminate boredom in your dog and to reduce digging, regardless of if your dog is a natural-born digger or not, is to follow the recommendations listed below.
Make Sure You Start Training Your Dog At An Early Age
Training is important for all dogs whether they are natural diggers or not. It’s important to begin training your dog at an early age and teaching him basic cues like “leave it”, “sit”, “stay”, “drop it”, “come”, and “lay down”. Understanding these basic cues will help your dog respond better to you when it comes time to tell him to stop digging or redirect his attention elsewhere.
One mistake many pet parents make is that they think training is no longer needed once their puppy reaches adulthood.
In reality, training should begin as early as possible with your puppy or rescue and continue on throughout his lifetime.
Implement Proper Exercise
As we mentioned above, many dogs may dig simply due to boredom or in an effort to provide themselves with some measure of comfort.
You can help reduce pent-up anxiety and boredom by ensuring your dog is properly exercised. All dogs, regardless of their breed, age, or size need exercise each and every day. Having a good understanding of your dog’s history will help you determine the proper amount of exercise your unique dog needs each day, but you can also gauge it by your dog’s personal energy level.
Smaller dogs that are more active should have at least a half hour to 40 minutes of exercise each day, while medium to leather dogs do best with an hour or so of dedicated exercise.
Very energetic dogs like Siberian Huskies may need more than an hour of exercise and will do best with free play time in a park or secure backyard.
The best time to give your dog exercise is shortly before you plan on leaving your dog on his own or in his crate. Dogs tend to become most stressed, bored, or destructive after their owners leave, especially if they have not been properly exercised or if they have not been left with plenty to do to keep them occupied while their owners are away.
And this is where mental stimulation comes into play.
Don’t Forget About Mental Stimulation
Mental stimulation is incredibly important for all dogs, and can help reduce a number of destructive behaviors like digging, barking, marking, and chewing.
Mental stimulation can also come in many forms, including game-like training sessions, puzzle toys, or even homemade agility courses or obstacle courses set up by you inside your home or in your backyard.
Like exercise, mental stimulation should be provided every day to help ensure your dog is happy and mentally sound.
Invest In The Proper Dog Toys
Investing in the proper dog toys to help keep your dog active and engaged is a huge part of helping stop destructive behaviors like digging, especially if your dog is prone to such activities.
Some of the best toys we suggest that were listed above to help keep your dog mentally stimulated and busy include snuffle mats, KONG chew toys, puzzle toys, and treat balls.
Provide Your Dog With A Safe Place To Dig In Your Yard
If you know your dog is a natural digger, you may want to provide him with a safe place to dig instead of taking it away from him altogether. Some owners find that creating a dog run for their dog and filling it with dog-safe dirt or sand allows their dog to explore his natural instinct in a safe environment.
If you don’t want your dog digging in your yard at all, consider investing in a sandbox where your dog can play and dig freely without causing any damage to your yard or garden.
When you do provide your dog with a safe place to dig, make sure you are also making it clear to your dog where he should not dig. This is where proper training and investing in the best dog digging repellent products can come in handy.
We hope this has been a helpful article on how to prevent digging and the best dog digging repellent products!
Now we want to hear from you. Is your dog a natural digger? Tell us below in the comment section.
Thanks for reading!
Jen Jones is a professional dog trainer and behavior specialist with more than 25 years of experience. As the founder of ‘Your Dog Advisor’ and the ‘Canine Connection’ rehabilitation center, she applies a holistic, empathetic approach, aiming to address root causes rather than merely treating symptoms.
Well known for her intuitive and compassionate approach, Jen adopts scientifically-proven, reward-based methods, encouraging positive reinforcement over punishment. Jen specializes in obedience training, behavior modification, and puppy socialization. Her innovative methods, particularly in addressing anxiety and aggression issues, have been widely recognized. Jen has worked with many of the world’s leading dog behaviorists and in her free time volunteers with local animal shelters and rescue groups.