When your rottweiler is digging it can be absolutely infuriating. However, this article is going to show you all the different ways you can stop a rottweiler digging, as well as why they’re doing it in the first place, and what you should avoid doing!
So keep reading to find out everything you need to know!
Why Do Rottweilers Dig?
There can be a number of reasons that your rottweiler is digging. And if you can identify the reason, you can better match a solution to it. However, because there are a number of different reasons your rottweiler is digging, it can often be caused by more than one at a time. So you may need to figure out all the different reasons.
Here are the most common causes that make a rottweiler dig.
One of the reasons your rottweiler may be digging is too escape. If they’re bored in the yard, or there’s something outside that has their attention, then they’re going to want to get out.
For example, there could be another animal, person, or dog in heat across the road (if your pups a boy).
When your rottweiler realizes that the fence doesn’t extend under the ground, they’ll constantly try digging to escape.
Rottweilers also dig for fun. This is especially common in rottweilers that are left alone for long periods of time, without any entertainment or company.
Without these things, they’ll look for other ways to have fun. Of course, one way is digging. When they notice the way the mud falls, or if there’s something to dig out, then they’re going to spend a lot of time entertaining themselves in this way.
They’re Burying Treasure
While it may not be treasure to you, there are some items your rottweiler has that they may not want to share. Some things they’ll commonly bury are bones, treats, and toys.
And sometimes they won’t be digging to bury something, but digging to find something. If they’ve previously buried treasure in your yard before, then they may begin looking for it again.
This behavior is hereditary to all dogs, so it’s not uncommon to see it in rottweilers.
They’re Searching For Prey
Most of the time, it’s terriers that are going to dig to find prey. However, sometimes rottweilers will do the same. If there’s an intruder in their garden that they’re desperate to get too, then they may start digging to reach them.
Anything that can dig and bury themselves is likely the cause of this behavior, and often times adequate pest control can stop this from happening.
They’re Seeking Shelter
If there’s no shelter in your garden, then your rottweiler may begin to dig to create one. This is especially common in dogs that are in an environment that is too hot or cold for them.
When the environment is too hot, they’ll dig to where the earth is cooler to relieve themselves from the heat. Likewise, when it’s too cold, they’ll dig to create a burrow that will help shelter them from some of the elements like the wind.
This is very instinctual behavior. In some cases, they’ll just do it because it’s ingrained into them. In fact, some times you might even see them trying to dig in their crate or bed.
Separation anxiety can also cause your rottweiler to dig when they’re left alone. As well as digging, you may also notice that your rottweiler chews things up, barks, howls, cries, and paces when you’re not around.
If your dog has separation anxiety then the best thing you can do is take them to a professional who can help you work through the issues with them.
Just remember, if your rottweiler is acting out due to separation anxiety, they’re not being naughty. They’re just extremely anxious and panicking when you’re not around.
They’re Expending Energy
If your not giving your rottweiler long enough walks, or playing with them enough, then they’re going to have a lot of excess energy to get rid of.
One way they may end up getting rid of this energy is by digging. Remember, digging isn’t just going to physically tire them out, but it will mentally tire them out as well.
How Do You Stop A Rottweiler Digging?
Now you know all the different reasons that your rottweiler could be digging. And with this knowledge, you can choose the best method to get them to stop.
Here are all the different ways you can stop your rottweiler digging! Remember, though, you don’t just have to use one method. Using a few at a time can be extremely effective.
Make Sure You’ve Trained Them
The NUMBER ONE way you’re going to stop your rottweiler from digging, and other negative behavior is to train them properly. With good training you won’t have to always keep an eye on them. You can leave them alone safe in the knowledge they’re going to be good!
If you’ve never trained your rottweiler before then now would be the perfect time to do so! And I’d highly recommend Brain Training For Dogs. It works by using positive reinforcement instead of punishment to teach your rottweiler right and wrong.
This way not only do they learn the right way to act, but they enjoy the experience as well and an extremely strong bond will be created between the two of you!
If you want to find out more about Brain Training For Dogs then check out the review!
Take Away Things They Like To Bury
If you know the items your rottweiler commonly buries, one of the things you can do to stop digging is simply taking them away when they’re on their own.
In most cases, it’s not going to be all toys but one or two types of toys. (A lot of the time, it will be bones or toys that contain food.)
Once you know what toy it is, remove it and oftentimes the digging will stop!
Give Them A Sandpit
If your rottweiler really loves digging, you don’t necessarily have to get them to stop. If your backyard has the space for it, why not give them a sandpit?
By burying their toys in the sandpit you’ll show them that this is a suitable area for them to dig. It will take time for them to understand this, but when they do, you’ll no longer have to worry about them digging your garden up!
And not only will they not dig your garden up, but they’ll also still get to have fun digging too! So it’s win-win.
If you do notice your rottweiler digging somewhere they shouldn’t be. Simply draw attention back to the sandpit and once they start digging give them a treat. Over time, they’ll soon realize that the sandpit is the right area to dig in.
Make Sure They Have Shelter
You should also make sure you’re giving your rottweiler shelter. When it’s too hot, there needs to be plenty of shade and a place where they can get out of the heat. When it’s too cold, make sure you’ve set up a dog house properly for them that will keep them warm.
(Or even better in both cases, bring them inside.)
A proper shelter won’t just stop them from digging, but it’s also going to keep them happy and content, instead of suffering in the elements.
If you think that your rottweiler is trying to get to pests and animals in your garden, then you should try to remove them as best you can. You should try using humane traps and deterrents to help stop them from coming into your garden.
As well as this, you could also try sectioning off areas where they commonly are. This way your rottweiler will be less inclined to dig.
Spend More Time With Them
If your rottweiler is spending too much time on their own then it’s no wonder they’re going to dig. One of the best ways you can stop them from digging is by spending more time with them. Not only are they going to be a lot more entertained when you’re around, but they’re also going to feel calmer.
But if you can’t spend a lot of time with them, try to find a family member or friend who can. And in cases where you can’t, make sure you’re providing them with lots of toys and fun things to entertain themselves with!
Give Them A Paddling Pool
Giving your rottweiler a paddling pool when they’re too hot is a great way to keep them cool! Ideally, you want to keep it in the shade to reduce the chance of heatstroke, however, if you can’t it’s still better than nothing.
If it’s really hot outside, you can even try adding some ice to the pool to cool it down even more.
When you’re buying a paddling pool, just make sure you don’t buy an inflatable one, as your pup’s claws can often rip through them.
Exercise Them More
This is one of the simplest but most effective methods to get your rottweiler to stop digging. Just start to exercise them more! Taking them on long walks, and letting off the leash for an hour a day is going to work wonders for their behavior!
If you don’t have the time to let them off the leash, then make sure you’re giving them a brisk walk. And on days where you can’t walk them try to play a game with them like tug of war.
The key is to find some way to tire out their mind and body.
Make Sure They’re Mentally Stimulated
As you can see by now, it’s not just their body you need to tire out. But you also need to tire out their mind as well.
Training them and giving them puzzle toys is a great way to do this and it’s really going to keep their mind active.
If you’re not sure what toys to get them, KONGs are normally a great choice.
Some great games you can play with them include fetch, tug of war, and hide and seek. If you’re really bored you can even create an obstacle course for them to run through.
Make Sure You Reward Good Behavior
If your rottweiler is being good remember to reward them. This is going to help reinforce the positive behavior in their head and increase the chance of them doing it again.
For example, if you’ve put a sandpit in your backyard and they start digging in it, then give them a treat. And similarly, if they’re playing with a puzzle toy instead of digging, once again give them a treat!
Make Sure They’re Not Stressed
If your rottweiler is digging because they’re stressed, then you should try to figure out the source of stress and stop it. Unfortunately, a lot of times there may not be anything you can do. For example, if you’ve just moved house or there’s a new animal with you, then they’re going to be stressed no matter what.
However, there are times when you can stop them from being stressed. For example, if there’s some external stimulus that grabs their attention, you can try blocking their sight so they can’t see it anymore.
Add Digging Deterrents
Another great method to stop your rottweiler from biting is to add digging deterrents to your garden. You simply place them in the common places that your pup likes to dig, and eventually, they’ll learn that it’s not as fun as it used to be.
The main digging deterrents are things that smell bad and things that stop them from digging.
Some great deterrents you can try are placing flat rocks in the areas they dig, using plastic chicken wire or netting to stop them digging, anything that smells such as cayenne pepper or citrus (this works particularly well in flower beds.), and you can also try to use a sprinkler system as well.
What Not To Do When Your Rottweiler Is Digging
While there are many things that you can do to stop your rottweiler from digging there are some things that you should definitely avoid doing. If you do these, you may stop digging, but other behavioral problems are likely to occur.
Here are some of the things you definitely shouldn’t do.
You should never hit your dog for bad behavior. When you do this, all you’re going to do is cause fear and mistrust to grow in them. While the behavior may stop initially, it’s likely that MUCH worse behavior will result from hitting them.
Any sort of physical punishment should never be used.
Don’t Reward Them With Attention
Another common thing a lot of people do is reward their rottweiler by giving them attention. Remember, even negative attention is still attention. Some dogs will do anything for attention, no matter what kind of attention it is.
If you need to get them to stop digging, then clap your hands or shake a can full of rocks to distract them.
Don’t Leave Them On Their Own Too Long
And lastly, try not to leave them on their own too long. If you leave them on their own too long then they’re going to become bored and start digging. You should never leave them for more than 4 hours at a time, when possible. Although of course, this isn’t always practical.
Now you know why a rottweiler is digging, as well as what you can do to get them to stop and what to avoid doing. Whatever the case, the best thing you can do is use a training program to reduce the chance of digging occurring. However, as you can see, if you can’t use a training program there are a lot of temporary methods you can try.
And once again the most important thing to remember when your rottweiler is digging is to NEVER hit them or hurt them in any way. Doing this will only cause multiple problems to occur.
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