Why Do Dachshunds Dig?

We all love dachshunds for their big personalities and playful natures. But, this can come at a price when they start digging at their beds, the flower borders, and even under the fence. Why do dachshunds like to dig so much and what can we do to control this behavior?

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Why do dachshunds dig?

There are two common reasons why dachshunds dig. The first is instinctual. You have to remember that before these dogs were companions, they were hunting animals. They would dig down into the ground to flush out badgers and drive them towards hunters. That is why the “badger dog” has such a long body and big feet. Today, there isn’t any practical need for them to dig if they are family pets. But, that doesn’t always curb their need to follow this desire to dig.

Related Post: Are Dachshunds Hunting Dogs?

Then some dogs simply dig out of boredom. Dog’s that don’t have anything better to do with their time will entertain themselves. They are smart animals and need to keep themselves busy somehow. Some dogs resort to chewing or other destructive behavior in the home. For dachshunds, it's digging. For the most part, this will take place in the garden, which also poses the risk of them getting out under the fence. But, this isn’t always the case.

Related Post: How to Keep a Dachshund Busy

Why do dachshunds dog holes in the backyard?

Digging in the backyard is a great way to get your attention and for dachshunds to get the most out of the experience. They may dig at the lawn because it is a blank canvas for them to create some amazing holes. Or, they may dig up plants in the softer earth to get you to come over.

Why do dachshunds dig in bed?

This is a curious trait that these dogs exhibit that doesn’t make a lot of sense to us as owners. Digging holes in the ground seem logical by comparison. However, there are two theories here. The first is that the act of digging at a dog bed mimics the action of digging a safe hole to sleep in. This might raise some questions about their feelings of security at home.

Then some dogs dig as a way of fluffing up the bed and nesting to get more comfortable. If they do this regularly, it might be a sign that they could use a different bed. A new dog bed might be the answer here. You can find some soft, plush options with raised sides that may provide a more secure feel as though they were in a den.

Will my dachshund grow out of digging?

There are new dachshund owners that assume that this behavior is just a puppyhood thing and adult dachshunds won’t dig. This isn’t necessarily true. While the desire to dig and the energy behind the actions may decrease as dogs get older, it might not disappear entirely. That is why it is important to train dogs early and make it clear what sort of behavior you tolerate.

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How do I stop my dachshund from digging?

There are a few different tricks that you can use to stop your pet from digging. The best approach is to start training your pet that digging is undesirable behavior. You can use positive corrective training to stop them when they start to dig and praise them when they stop. It can take some time to overcome this desire because of those genetic instincts. However, these dogs will eventually get the idea.

Then there are those dogs that dig out of boredom. In this case, it is your responsibility to make sure that your pet isn’t ever in that state of mind. Your dog might go into the garden and dig holes, or dig at their bed because they have no better option. So, give them that option. Provide them with enough toys and mental stimulation where digging isn’t so desirable, especially if they are home alone for long periods.

Another great idea is to form a sort of compromise with your dachshund and allow them to dig only in designated areas. This is a great idea if you don’t want to deny them their fun but also don’t want a mess in your yard. A sandbox is perfect. You can train them to contain their digging to this sandy area, and maybe even make a game of it with buried treats. This also means that there are fewer mixed signals if they can dig holes at the beach but not in the yard.

Also, you may want to take a look at how much exercise your dog gets. Digging could be a sign that they have too much energy to burn because they didn’t get a long enough walk. Tire them out with exercise and playtime so that they want to rest or sleep when they get back. Also, give them that walk before leaving them alone at home.

How to stop a dachshund from digging under the fence?

If your pet does have the habit of digging under the fence, the best thing that you can do is make the prospect much less attractive, or even impossible. The latter is the most difficult, it will require a lot of hard work to get the fence into a more impenetrable state. You can bury rocks in the ground by the fence as a barrier to stop them from getting through the soil and under the fence. You could plant shrubs around the perimeter that are unappealing and maybe a bit thorny. Or, you could even get a new fence that you can partially bury so they can’t get through.

Related Post: How To Dachshund Proof Your Home & Garden

Dachshund digging doesn’t have to be a big issue.

This instinctual behavior does have the potential to get out of hand without the right training and modifications from an early age. But, there are still lots of tricks to stop dachshund digging, or at least limit it to playtime in designated areas. Be consistent with any rules your make, be patient when it comes to their genetic instincts, and remember that you can make a difference with the right effort.

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