How Do I Stop Bailey From Digging?

Bailey really enjoys digging in the backyard and it's really tearing it up. She has dug 3 ginormous holes, and my main concern is that she'll hurt herself while running. She has also dug a smaller whole under the fence, and sticks her head underneath to see the neighbours puppy.

I'm not sure if it's her "puppy" stage or if she's just a digger. I also noticed that each hole she dug was right by a tree root, and she likes to try to pull them out of the ground.

Is there anything I can do to stop her from digging?

Asked by Bailey on Mar 27th 2011 in Digging
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Best Answer


I feel your pain. Every dog I ever had went through a digging phase. The only way to stop it was to be out in the yard with them when they start digging and "claim" the hole for myself, sending my dog away.

Burying poop works, but most dogs will just start a new hole.

Understanding why helps some....they do smell something, usually moles, digging around under ground. Instinct tells them to dig up and catch them. My dogs catch moles, voles and shrews all the time. Sonny (the dope) has a thing for earthworms. ???!! Candy was a super mole catcher. She learned to make a tiny hole with one swipe of her paw and pull the mole out with her teeth. But in her early days she dug trenches!

Snickers hates water, so if I fill a hole with water or stick the sprinkler over the hole, he avoids it.

Hot ground pepper (cayenne) works for a short time too.

All the tricks help, but supervising and redirecting is the only cure.

Sonny answered on Mar 28th.

Other Answers



I would try burying some of Baileys poop into the holes that she has dug. Most of the time dogs won't dig up or around their own waste.

Good luck! :) There is also some sprays you can try at Petsmart or Petco that are called No Dig. I'm not sure how they work but, may be worth a try if a last resort.

Maverick answered on 3/27/11. Helpful? Yes/Helpful: No 0 Report this answer


Get or build her a sand box, bury treats in there and leave a couple close to the surface as quick finds. Use her leave it command if she digs elsewhere and redirect her to the sandbox. She will soon learn that digging in the yard upsets you but, in the sandbox pleases you and rewards her.

Halo answered on 3/27/11. Helpful? Yes/Helpful: No 1 Report this answer


Correction and redirect. You have to keep your eye on Bailey when she's outside, when she starts to dig encourage her to do something else such as a game of tag.
I noticed many dogs at the dogpark also dig up tree roots this time of year and shake the heck of it trying to rip it from the ground.

♥ DEOGIE ♥ answered on 3/28/11. Helpful? Yes/Helpful: No 0 Report this answer

Jackson Tan

My trick is to fill Jack's hole with ash from when we burn off our garbage. He hates the smell. Another good idea is any preparation that includes the bitter agent bitrex. It is 800 hundred times more bitter than a lemon in its diluted form. (Never. ever use undiluted bitrx as it is a whooping 8000 times more bitter and can actually kill.) I can guarantee you that a dog that sticks his snout in a hole sprinkled with that will never try to dig again in that AREA. (He may dig another hole else where, though!) Removing toys and bones after he has played with them is good too, as dog often dig a hole to bury their 'trophies'. None of these solutions is failsafe, though - some dogs just love to dig. Sandboxes and taking him places like forests, where it acceptable to dig, can also satisfy the urge, whilst sparing your lawn! Good luck!

Jackson Tan answered on 3/30/11. Helpful? Yes/Helpful: No 0 Report this answer