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March 27, 2015

PetSafe® Expert

Michael K. Shafer

Stop Your Dog’s Digging with a Remote Trainer

Dogs who like to dig can cause many problems for their owners. They get mud everywhere, ruin flowerbeds, and leave the yard looking like a disaster. It costs time and money to clean up after them every day. Luckily, there’s an easy way to stop the digging behavior.

Why Do Dogs Dig?

Let’s start with why dogs dig. One big reason is because they’re bored. Digging helps entertain them and is rewarding for a bored dog. If your dog is digging out of boredom, first try to give him more entertaining toys. Another reason is to hunt things like bugs, acorns, or animals. A third reason is to create a cool spot in the dirt to lie down in if they’re hot. This is the easiest to fix. You simply need to provide enough shade and water to keep your dog cool.

Teaching Your Dog Not to Dig

Remote trainers are useful, effective tools to stop your dog’s digging. Most of the time dogs have learned to dig out of habit, so you face the challenge of stopping it. Sometimes dogs can be persistent, and it’s hard to catch them every time they dig, which makes solving a digging problem frustrating. A remote training collar can help fix the problem more easily than some other methods. Here are a few tips to help the you succeed.

  1. Consistency is important with any kind of training. Put on the remote training collar every time your dog is outside for more consistency. Your digging problem can be solved quickly if you follow through.
  2. As soon as your dog starts to dig, press and hold the stim button until he stops. Then immediately release the button.
  3. Use the lowest stim level that gets your dog to stop. Start with the lowest level and move up to a higher level until your dog has only a slight reaction, such as a head tilt or ears perking.
  4. Don’t say anything to your dog throughout the process. This will help your dog to realize he shouldn't dig at all, not just when you are around.
  5. Consistently stop the digging every time your dog starts. Once he has stopped, you can then offer him a treat or toy to give him something acceptable to do, such as play together. Keep things fun and upbeat every time your dog stops digging so he knows he’ll have more fun when he’s not digging and eventually learns not to dig.

Which Remote Trainer Works Best?

There are many remote trainers that can do the job for you. A few examples are PetSafe Elite series training collars, or the PetSafe Pendant system, or even a SportDOG 425. Look for these features:

  • Wide range of levels so you can find the proper level of stim.
  • Tone or vibration function for more training options.
  • No delay between the remote and the collar. This delay will throw your timing off and make it much more difficult to succeed.

Remote trainers are also great for solving other behavior problems or reinforcing obedience commands. This method does work better for some people and dogs than others. Remote trainers are more effective tools for dogs that are generally more confident and strong-willed. Dogs that are more nervous or fearful may not be as successful with remote trainers. If your dog is somewhere in the middle, you can also try a spray remote trainer or only use the tone function of your remote trainer.

Grab a remote training collar and follow these simple steps. With a little work you can see results within even a few days. If you feel like you’re not making progress or need more help, talk to a local trainer. Always remember to stay calm and patient during training and you can succeed!

Written by

Michael K. Shafer

Michael K. Shafer

PetSafe® Dog Trainer

PetSafe® Expert

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