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Why Does My Dog Dig Holes


Hole-digging by dogs is among the many behavior problems dogs can have. However, if you closely notice your dog’s actions, you’ll see what urges them to dig holes. This article gives five reasons for dog owners on why their dogs dig and how to prevent it. 

Looking For Fun And Entertainment

When you notice your dog digging holes, it may be doing so for fun. According to the United States Humane Society, when your pet learns that soil and roots can move, it plays with them as a way to explore. If a dog is left outside all alone with no toys, it’ll start digging a hole in the yard. Without playmates and no outlet of energy, they hope to find entertainment in the soil. It’s a common dog behavior. If you want your dogs to stop digging, you need to ensure they have toys. Also, never leave them unsupervised. 

Trying To Escape

If dogs dig holes, it’s sometimes because they want to escape. It’s their getaway attempt. Since they can’t go beyond the fence line, they try to go under it. They are either trying to get close to something or run away. 

To make the digging stop, you need to understand how your dog feels. Is it because your dog wants to get away from confinement, or are they chasing something? Sometimes dogs are dealing with separation anxiety. Burying chicken wire at the fence bottom and consulting an expert would help. 

Searching For Protection And Comfort

Adult dogs normally don’t hide for protection, but smaller ones do. Usually, most dogs dig a hole for self-protection. Sometimes, they are even seeking comfort. At other times, it’s as simple as finding a cool spot in summer. Your dog’s body language says much about it. In rainier, colder weather, they may dig a hole in the yard to protect themselves from the elements. Notice your dog’s behavior. Very often, they dig the ground to seek water. If you want to keep your pet dog from digging, keep it inside during extreme weather. 

Holes For Burying Treasures

Dogs dig in sand and mulch or similar substrates to bury their hidden treasure. They save it for later. If dog owners give their pets a favorite toy or chew, they dig a hole and hide it. Sometimes, dogs even search for their past hidden treasures. It’s very much like a hereditary behavior issue where dogs bury their extra food for future consumption. If you want your pets to stop digging a hole in your yard, give them limited food. They won’t have surplus bones and stuff to hide. When they play with toys, don’t leave them unnoticed. Play along or be close. 

Looking For Prey

In search of prey and insects, dogs sometimes make holes in the ground. They dig for prey that runs underground. Chipmunks and moles are their favorite food. Even if they find anything running on the ground, they will start digging. To stop this process, cover the areas of your yard where your pet or other dogs reach for making holes. You may also train your dog to eat what’s given by the owner. So, it won’t dig for prey.

Making A Sleeping Spot

When a dog bites almost everyone around, it comes under abnormal behavior problems. Similarly, if the dog digs all around, it’s uncomfortable for the dog owner. So, you can make a sleeping area or dig a wet hole in your yard. Then, you can either get an outdoor bed or keep the regular one there. Also, put a blanket or pillow in it so the dog would almost feel indoors. 

Stay Around Your Dogs

Leaving dogs alone can become an issue. Since it’s a common dog behavior to look for entertainment, they will dig holes. So, don’t let them be alone in the yard for long. Instead, keep playing with your pets every day. It will not give your dogs the space to be notorious. A wide variety of objects and interactive toys will keep them busy. 

Fulfill All Their Needs

Dogs dig for prey, protection, and food, and water. Therefore, ensure that your pet gets shelter in the yard and sufficient freshwater. In extreme cold and warm weather, as dog owners, you must take care of their needs. So, your pet need not dig holes.


Resource guarding, self-protection, and searching prey are among the reasons your dog is making holes in your yard. The good part is there are easy ways to make them stop digging! But instead of considering it abnormal, try understanding why it’s doing so.


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