How To Train Your Dog To Stop Digging Under The Fence

Dogs have a natural propensity to dig.

Learn more about how to stop dogs from digging under the fence if you have an experienced escape artist on your hands or are getting a new puppy and want to take some measures.

You can use several methods, such as enhancing stimulation in the yard, ensuring your dog gets plenty of exercise and making the physical design of the fence to deter your dog from digging under the bar and escaping.

The reasons why dogs dig are briefly addressed below, along with some methods you might employ to deter them from doing so.

Why do dogs dig?

For several reasons, your dog may be digging beneath the fence.


Anxious dogs may turn to dig as a coping form. They might be afraid of the nearby fireworks or dealing with separation anxiety at work.


If your pet is bored, it might start digging as entertainment. This might be the case, particularly if you have an intelligent dog in a yard without any toys or other stimulation.

Drives to mate

Unneutered dogs may be trying to escape to find a mate. If they smell another dog in heat, their instincts may take over, and they may do whatever it takes to go to the other dog.

To escape away

Your dog might merely be trying to escape out of a sense of neglect from you or a desire to explore the great outdoors. We’re back to the theme of boredom.

Locating food

If your dog is a greedy breed, it might be trying to obtain the food in your neighbour’s yard. They may not even be hungry; instead, they may only be searching for a particular food.


Dogs may be trying to get close to an animal on the other side of the fence if they see one due to their strong hunting instincts.

How to stop dogs from digging

Let’s try some solutions after trying a few reasons for your dog’s escape attempts.

Ease their fear

You may either prevent stressful events for your dog or employ techniques to calm them down by being aware of the stress factors that affect them. For example, if you know your dog is afraid of thunder and lightning, you can bring them inside when a storm is predicted. Also included in this category are fireworks. If your dog’s nervousness contributes to their digging, consider enrolling them in specialist programs to overcome separation anxiety.

Provide stimulation

You might consider placing toys or other entertaining items in your yard if your dog is intelligent and enjoys digging holes as a form of stimulation. Examples include chewing toys, bubble machines, puzzles with treats, and an agility course. Another choice is to organize a treasure hunt for your dog to participate in all day.

More exercise for your pup

Your pet might be trying to escape so that it can run about and get some exercise. This can be especially true if you haven’t been keeping up with your dog’s scheduled walks and your yard is small. To address this, increase the number of walks you take them on and ensure they exercise for at least an hour every day. Try playing fetch and chasing yard activities instead of taking them for frequent walks.

Consider desexing

If your pet companion hasn’t been desexed, digging may signify that they are trying to elude capture to find a mate. Your dog’s hormones should escape to normal after desexing; ideally, the urge to run away will subside. Desexing your dog also prevents any unforeseen pregnancies or litter from happening!

Patching up existing holes

Your dog might continue digging in your yard if there are already holes. Make sure to routinely plug in any gaps in your yard, whether made by your dog or not, to prevent future digging. You may tell if your dog is still digging by whether the holes keep appearing over time or if it was a problem in the past.

To trouble regions, add a spray that is safe for dogs.

Dog-friendly dig deterrent sprays are widely available. You can add these in or spray them around the yard’s perimeter to stop Fido from digging in problem areas. Just keep it in case some sprays could discolour fences; if this is important to you, check before making your order. Instead of using deterrent sprays, plain vinegar can occasionally work to deter dogs away from a particular area.

Choose a site for digging.

In your garden, dig a particular area for exploring, and train your dog to only use it there. This is an excellent option for allowing your dog to fulfil their want to dig without completely digging your yard. You may make a straightforward digging pit out of sand or mud that is also more pleasurable for your dog by adding toys, treats, or bones to find. Training your dog to only dig in the designated area may take some time and work, but the results will be worth it.

When your dog is being supervised, only take it outside.

If your pet won’t stop digging and you can’t make the yard’s topography, it might be time to restrict their access to the yard to times when you can observe them closely. Doing this will force you to halt all digging before it gets out of hand. This might be a long-term repair if you can’t get your dog to stop searching, or it could be a temporary fix while you train them not to.

Preventing an escape

If you’ve tried a variety of preventative measures to stop your pet from digging and they haven’t worked, it might be time to make some changes to your yard.

Bury your fence far down.

If you bury your fence deeply in the ground, dogs won’t be able to dig below it. Either do it yourself or hire a local landscaper to help. It is suggested that you extend your fence at least two feet below the surface to prevent your pet from escaping. A few dog-proof fencing options have also been developed to make it more difficult for your pet to dig a hole in the fence and escape.

At the bottom of the fence, install wire.

Chicken wire is a cheap solution if you’re wondering what you can put under your dog’s fence to deter them from digging. You can stop your pup from escaping by placing a little piece of chicken wire under your fence. Including barriers like these in your wall is a great way to test a solution without spending much money.

Concrete-filled fence

If your dogs are curious, you might want to consider adding concrete at the bottom of your fences to prevent them from escaping. This is a more time-consuming solution, but it might work to stop intrepid dogs from fleeing. Dogs cannot dig through concrete; therefore, by pouring cement the entire length of the fence, you may be sure your pet cannot escape.

Add in some rocks or large gravel stones.

Large gravel and rock stones at the bottom of the fence can also help keep your pet from escaping. If you do this, you’ll make it more difficult for them to dig below. This method is also more straightforward than trying to bury the fence or placing concrete down because you can add pebbles or stones on top of the ground. Find rocks or gravel that complement your yard to modify the area and keep your pet safe.

Several methods you may employ while trying to figure out how to stop dogs from digging under the fence. From preventative measures like gravel, wire, and concrete to extra stimulation and removing stressors for the dog, there is bound to be a solution that alleviates the ailment.

Whether you’re looking for a long-term solution to your time, trying to figure out how to temporarily stop your dog from digging, or are getting ready to get a new dog and want to learn about your options, we hope you’ve found this article to be helpful.