Did you just get a new puppy? Maybe you even have an older dog that has decided to start digging at your carpet.
This can be annoying because even though we love our furry friends dearly, that does not mean we enjoy it when they find new ways to mess with our homes.
Reasons for Dog Digging at Carpets.
You may have recently realized that your lovable puppy has taken up the habit of digging up your carpet.
This can be hard as a pet owner, especially if you were not planning on replacing your carpet anytime soon.
So, why is your dog doing this? Is there anything specific that might lead to this behavior?
One of the reasons your dog may be digging at the carpet goes back to their instincts.
When a dog decides to dig at the dirt in the wild, it can help to give them a cool area to lie down.
Dogs do this to get comfortable before resting in that area.
A dog may also dig at the carpet if they find a bit of food trapped between the fibers of your flooring.
Your dog could just be trying to get at that little scrap of food that was left behind. Another reason your dog may decide to dig at the floor would be if they want to bury something.
Maybe you just gave your dog a nice treat or a brand-new toy. Your dog's instinct is to keep the things they enjoy away from other dogs or predators.
Even though they are safe at home, your dog may just be attempting to keep their new favorite item hidden away from anything that may want to take it away from them.
Your dog could also quite honestly be bored. Dogs need to be mentally stimulated just as much as they need to have exercise.
While some dogs are more laid back and do not need a lot of extra attention, your dog may need a little help keeping them from boredom.
Finally, your dog may dig at the carpet when you are not home.
If you find that your dog has been digging at the carpet whenever you are not around, they could be suffering from separation anxiety.
At times, this is even your dog's attempt to try and dig to get to the person they miss.
Humans do not do this, so it may seem odd, but it is your dog's way of coping when they miss someone.
How to Prevent Your Dog from Digging at The Carpet?
Well, now that we know some of the reasons that your dog could be digging at the carpet, we can try to find ways to help stop this behavior and prevent it from occurring in the future.
First, look at the reasons why your dog does this. You may want to consider getting them a bed they can specifically lie down to rest on.
It would be even better if it is not extremely hot for your dog. Even if your dog still digs at their dog bed, it is a better option than your carpet.
If your dog is digging for food in the carpet, this may just be a sign that it is time for you to get out the vacuum.
If this is the reason why your dog is digging, the behavior should go away once there is no food left to dig for.
Now, let us say your dog wants to bury something. The best thing you can do is to distract your dog.
When you see them digging at the carpet, try to use a command they know to get them to do something else.
You could also teach your dog the ‘leave it’ command. Whenever they try to dig at the carpet, tell them to ‘leave it’.
Always be sure to praise your dog when they do what you want.
If your dog was digging and you tell them to come and to sit, and they do as they were told, praise them, and reward them.
Do not reward your dog when they are digging, as this will only encourage the behavior that you do not want from your dog.
In the case of your dog being bored, this may still work, but you want to find a solution to the root of the problem.
You want to help cure their boredom as best as you can. There are some specific ways to do this that I will cover in a little bit.
As well as boredom, separation anxiety is also something that needs to be handled in a very specific way.
What Other Behaviors Should I Look Out For?
If your dog is either bored or experiencing separation anxiety, there are some other signs you can look for that will tell you what they are experiencing.
If your dog is feeling bored, they might do a lot more than just digging at the carpet. Your dog could decide to rummage in the trash.
They may also bark or chew on items they are not supposed to. Some dogs will even come to you and ask for attention when they feel bored.
They will be sure to let you know they want something to do. Dogs also behave in ways that can tell you they have separation anxiety.
If your dog barks or howls when you leave the house, they might be freaking out that you are leaving.
Dogs with separation anxiety will sometimes scratch at the doors and chew on shoes, furniture, or whatever else they can find.
They may even go to the bathroom while in the house if they are too freaked out.
What to Do When Your Dog Is Bored
What do you do when your dog is bored? It makes sense that the last thing we want as owners is for our dogs to feel bored.
We care for our companions, and we want to help them the best way we can when it comes to their happiness.
If your dog is bored, it could just be that they need more exercise. Take them on walks. Try to help your dog by playing with them.
Throw a ball for them in your yard, or maybe play a couple of games of tug of war. Tire your dog out so that they will not feel bored.
Sometimes, though, physical exercise just does not do the trick. Give your dog a variety in their life.
Switch out their toys occasionally. Give them a toy that dispenses food to them. There are plenty of interactive toys you can get your dog that they will love.
Dogs love puzzles and other games they can play. Some smarter dogs will show a lot less destructive behavior once they have been allowed to learn new things.
On a similar note, train your dog. If your dog is bored, try to teach them some new tricks.
Training is supposed to be fun for both you and your dog, so just enjoy it and watch how quickly they can catch on to what you are teaching them.
Helping Your Dog with Separation Anxiety
There is one more reason why your dog may be digging at the carpet, and that is separation anxiety.
It can be hard to see your dog freak out whenever you leave the house, but there are still some different ways that you can help your dog through this.
One thing you can do is leave your dog with clothes or blankets that smell like you. Your dog will take comfort in your scent while you are away.
Make sure your dog has toys that will keep them distracted. Toys that can dispense food are amazing for this.
If your dog is extremely destructive, and you’re worried they may hurt themselves or do a lot of damage, you may consider talking to your vet about things you can do to help your dog with their fearfulness while you are away.
If you do not feel like you want to leave your dog home alone anymore, you can also think about putting them in a doggy daycare. If their separation anxiety is mild, having a chance to play with other dogs may be good for them.