Why Does My Dog Dig?

August 8th, 2016

unnamedWe’ve all seen our dogs do weird things and wondered why they do them. Digging might be up there as one of the more puzzling behaviors your dog does. If you’ve seen your dog try to dig up the couch or the yard, you’ve probably asked yourself, “Why does my dog dig? What does it mean?”

Keeping Cool and Comfortable

If your dog is hot, she may dig to find a cooler place to rest. If she’s cold, she may dig both to get warm, and to make a warm hole in the ground to lay in.

Entertainment

Many dogs love to dig. Some breeds, like terriers, are more likely to dig than others. But any dog can develop a digging habit. You’ll know your dog is digging for fun if he alternates between digging and running around. Sand can be extra fun for them to dig in, so don’t be surprised if you see the behavior increase at the beach or in a sandy playground.

Burying Prized Possessions 

Before dogs were domesticated, burying food and prey was key to a dog’s survival. This allowed them to hide it, and come back to safely eat it later. Many dogs still feel this urge in their DNA, so just know that it’s perfectly normal. It’s even common for dogs to bury something in one place, dig it up and bury it again somewhere else.

Hunting 

Most dogs have some prey-drive to hunt moles, groundhogs, and other small ground animals. If your dog finds a hole with an animal inside, she may dig relentlessly in an attempt to get to the animal. It’s instinct!

Some other reasons include separation anxiety, or a desire to escape their enclosure. But for the most part, the reasons listed above are the most common reasons for digging.