My dog keeps digging up my garden. What can I do to stop this madness?
Your dog is perfect in the house. He/she knows that they are not allowed to scratch up the carpet, or chew on the chairs. But your pet is trained not to do those things. So what happens when you put your pet outside? Unless your pet is psychic, or is trained not to dig up your prize winning flower beds, or eat the vegetables out of your garden, or chew on the trees in your yard; that is exactly what Fido is going to do. It is not because your pet is doing it to spite you, or because they hate you, or they want to embarrass you in front of your guests. Pets do not have the ability to think like that. They dig in the yard and chew up plants because it is something fun to do!
So how do you stop your dog from doing those things to your yard? Well, some people give their dogs a place where they can dig. They install a sand box (like those for kids), which gives their pets somewhere to dig and, in the case of cats, use the big ‘litter box’ outside. This sand box does not have to be anything professional. I have a friend who uses a little kiddy pool filled with sand and her dogs love it! Plus, the plastic is tough enough for big dogs to dig and scratch it without drilling holes through it.
Another thing that people have suggested is buying pet deterrent from the pet store. These deterrents usually have a chemical that makes pets stay away from certain areas, and stops
them from chewing on things. The most common is a product called “Bitter Apple”. These products are good, however, you need to regularly spray the product on the places you don’t want your pets to go. Plus, when it rains, or when the sprinklers turn on, the water causes the smell to go away. Not a good long-term solution.
A better solution to the problem of digging in your flower beds is a little creative thinking. Here’s my solution: Go to your local hardware store and buy a roll of 1 inch
chicken wire, and some mulch.
When you go home, go to your garden and cut the chicken wire to fit along (or in) your flowerbeds where you don’t want your dog to dig. The chicken wire is good because you can cut around bigger plants, such as rose bushes, and the holes are
big enough where you can plant seedlings in between the wire. When you have covered the areas that are not to be dug up with chicken wire (or your entire garden), then cover the wire with mulch. This gives your garden a professional look, and it will make all of your guests think that your dog is perfect. The mulch hides the wire and acts as a great fertilizer when it starts to decompose. Also, when your dog starts to dig, they will hit the chicken wire and eventually give up. The wire will also act as a deterrent for cats from defecating in the garden. This is only one of many suggestions to solving the problem. If you’d like to stop your dog permanently from digging in your yard, re-training your dog is strongly suggested, but until then, your garden will at least look manicured and hole free.