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Old December 3rd, 2008, 02:54 PM
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Husky proofing the yard

I was hoping I wouldn't have to do this, but Titus is a husky after all... and the digger blood runs deep in his veins

He digs... unfortunately, too much, not because hes bored (in fact hes never bored outside, he loves it, he has TONES of toys, we go with him 60% of the time, he just loves it)

What he loves more, is digging.... Our yard is a mine field now and we tried a lot of things to stop it, it just doesn't work. We tried catching his attention when he does it,loudly/sharply saying NO, then giving him a toy, getting him inside when he digs. Basically I'm out of ideas

Problem is... We live in an apartment, a nice apartment with a nice private yard, sure, but we rent.

Now here's the story with this yard... When we rented the place, it was under major renovations for two years, the landlady never touched the yard during then, we had to cut a jungle just to see the ground, so there's not grass, just dirt. And she doesn't want to put grass since she doesn't have a lawnmower (which we do) instead she wants to put stones around and make it all pretty. Which I don't want to, we're planing to use that yard, make a garden and relax in it, not have some sort of place where I can't lay on the grass. :P but thats another story.

So now all there is is dirt...with some patch of grass, and a lilac tree (which titus loves going under for....well..chilling) And a fence... which is one of those metallic fence ( http://www.secureyourfertiliser.gov....pmet_fence.jpg those one) So... not secure on the ground, he could easily dig under, we noticed he started as well :S

Now, we need a way to husky proof the place, huskies are you know, are prone to escapes and I'd rather NOT have a loose husky in Montreal thank you very much.

Any tips either to stop the digging, (hehe yea right) or proofing the place?
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Last edited by ashtoreth; December 3rd, 2008 at 03:37 PM.
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Old December 3rd, 2008, 03:16 PM
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babymomma babymomma is offline
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I know alot of peaple hate doing this but, why not make a leash run for him? we have clothesline rope (its not really rope, its like plastic or something, do you know what im talking about?)with one end Tied on at one end of my yard and another peice tied to the other end, then we bought a leash claspe and attached it to anothr peice of clothesline rope and hooked it onto the run part , bought another leash claspe and tied it to the other end of the rope and keely still has full run of the garden, but she cannot run away (We no lobger have a fence). Sorry, i probably didnt make any sense, if soemthing isnt clear to you just tell me and ill try to explain again!


If going with this idea, you should buy a harness so he isnt hooked on to his collar. This idea doesnt help with the digging, but if he ever dug under the fence he couldnt go anywhere.
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Old December 3rd, 2008, 03:38 PM
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Originally Posted by babymomma View Post
I know alot of peaple hate doing this but, why not make a leash run for him? we have clothesline rope (its not really rope, its like plastic or something, do you know what im talking about?)with one end Tied on at one end of my yard and another peice tied to the other end, then we bought a leash claspe and attached it to anothr peice of clothesline rope and hooked it onto the run part , bought another leash claspe and tied it to the other end of the rope and keely still has full run of the garden, but she cannot run away (We no lobger have a fence). Sorry, i probably didnt make any sense, if soemthing isnt clear to you just tell me and ill try to explain again!


If going with this idea, you should buy a harness so he isnt hooked on to his collar. This idea doesnt help with the digging, but if he ever dug under the fence he couldnt go anywhere.
yea he has an harness, we used to tie him up with a HUUUUUUGE cable like that, he just... dug up anyhow lol
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Old December 3rd, 2008, 03:42 PM
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Originally Posted by ashtoreth View Post
yea he has an harness, we used to tie him up with a HUUUUUUGE cable like that, he just... dug up anyhow lol
But it would keep him from running away. That s hould be your main concern right now, not just the holes hes is digging.
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Old December 3rd, 2008, 07:31 PM
todd1990 todd1990 is offline
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get him one of those shock collars. we got one for our dog, and he obeys that thing like theres no tomorrow. ive tried it on myself, and honestly it doesnt hurt. sure it sucks, real bad too, but its not something that inflicted brain damage on him. in fact, were both happy. he's real frisky (border collie/australian shepherd), so he used to get out alot, forcing us to build a pen for him. now all we do is open the back door and not worry, and he can run around all he wants to. as for your dog, or any dog for that matter, i cant see how it could dig under the wire. if he chews it, then chances are the collar will buzz him (but itll be buried anyways, so no worries). plus, if the land lady wants it out, all you gotta do is pull it out.
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Old December 3rd, 2008, 07:57 PM
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get him one of those shock collars. we got one for our dog, and he obeys that thing like theres no tomorrow. ive tried it on myself, and honestly it doesnt hurt. sure it sucks, real bad too, but its not something that inflicted brain damage on him. in fact, were both happy. he's real frisky (border collie/australian shepherd), so he used to get out alot, forcing us to build a pen for him. now all we do is open the back door and not worry, and he can run around all he wants to. as for your dog, or any dog for that matter, i cant see how it could dig under the wire. if he chews it, then chances are the collar will buzz him (but itll be buried anyways, so no worries). plus, if the land lady wants it out, all you gotta do is pull it out.
I dont do shock collar
thats the most polite way I can put it
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Old December 3rd, 2008, 08:04 PM
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Sounds like he needs a whole lot more exercise. Huskies don't normally dig unless they're bored and have much energy to spend. Running around a yard is simply not enough, not for any dog but especially not for a Husky.

How much exercise is he getting?

Our dogs dig on command. We've made them a garden just for that purpose where they know that it's the only place they're permitted to dig. We started by burying treats and toys in the area and encouraged them to dig them up. The simple answer is to supervise every time Titus is outdoors if you don't want him digging where he's not allowed to.

As for him wanting to get out of the yard, if he's tired, really tired, he'll have no desire to get out . Again, supervision is the key here as well.

No disrespect intended, but the shock collar is for lazy people, not for energetic dogs, imho.
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Old December 3rd, 2008, 08:08 PM
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Originally Posted by luckypenny View Post
Sounds like he needs a whole lot more exercise. Huskies don't normally dig unless they're bored and have much energy to spend. Running around a yard is simply not enough, not for any dog but especially not for a Husky.

How much exercise is he getting?

Our dogs dig on command. We've made them a garden just for that purpose where they know that it's the only place they're permitted to dig. We started by burying treats and toys in the area and encouraged them to dig them up. The simple answer is to supervise every time Titus is outdoors if you don't want him digging where he's not allowed to.

As for him wanting to get out of the yard, if he's tired, really tired, he'll have no desire to get out . Again, supervision is the key here as well.

No disrespect intended, but the shock collar is for lazy people, not for energetic dogs, imho.

lol, he gets more energy than I should give him for his age :S hes 5 months and runs around 1h a day and pulls, hes energitic for his age, seriously the vet warned us not to over exercise him. :S
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Old December 3rd, 2008, 08:18 PM
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Our dogs were both big diggers at that age. They grew out of it. Now if you're digging in the yard, they feel obligated to help you, but other than that the digging hasn't been a problem anymore. Mind you they are not outside alone either, one or both of us is always outside with them so even if they were still digging we would certainly notice and they wouldn't be going anywhere.

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Old December 3rd, 2008, 08:21 PM
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Originally Posted by ashtoreth View Post
lol, he gets more energy than I should give him for his age :S hes 5 months and runs around 1h a day and pulls, hes energitic for his age, seriously the vet warned us not to over exercise him. :S
1 hour per day is not over exercising. When we have pups as young as 2 months, they can romp around for as long as 2 hours at a time, running, play fighting, digging, etc. They take naps for an hour or two and are ready to go at it all over again. What's great about letting them get all their energy out is that you don't have to worry about behavior that could turn into problems later on.

Short training sessions throughout the day, leash walking, free play in the yard, feeding meals out of Kongs (make it difficult for him by adding peanut butter or no-salt cottage cheese and freezing them), chew toys (raw bones keep ours most occupied), and a playmate close to his age can all help to tire him out. Meanwhile, he's staying out of trouble that puppies like to find themselves in .
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Old December 3rd, 2008, 10:21 PM
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yup i agree with LP

Diamond thinks everytime is play time. walks, runs ,training. She is around the same age as Titus & 1 hour a day is not enough. we have 2 walks 1 hour each in the morning + 2 in the evening.

Here is Diamonds schedule:

7:OOam wake mom up need to P
Quick P in back-yard while mom gets coffee & kids breakys

7:15am- a walk, run, play & a lil training thrown in.
(we usually meet up with
8:00 the kids at the bus stop for some love from ALL the kids)
8:15am come home have Breaky
8:30am-9am-A brushing teeth & coat or tub time
9:01am Mom hasta work or Play on pets.ca (my nap time)
11:00am walkie time (This time I get to go out with Carrie Moms friend)
12:05pm or so return to Mommy & another play time In back-yard & some more training.
12:45pm- MY KONG!!! YAY
1:00pm major Nap kong unfinished
3:15pm Good drink of water & chase of the cats (Mom thinks that is bad)
3:30pm waiting for the Kids & Play time when they get home! quick P in backyard. Finish kong
4:00pm mom starts Dinner MMMMMMM (usually like to lie in the kitchen & watch.
4:40ish DAD'S home more play & cuddles
5:00pm dinner for them I mooch at this point. Dad always give me a lil.
5:30pmish I get My dinner & a lotsa love from everyone.
6:30pm walkies and a playtime (Cuz or squeek or both)
8:00pm power nap
9:00Pm kids walk me & play with me.
9:45pm cuddles with mom then say goodnite to dad & kids
10:00pm OUT for the night!

That is it pretty well

Last edited by Diamondsmum; December 3rd, 2008 at 10:24 PM.
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Old December 4th, 2008, 05:14 AM
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I had a husky and our trainer taught us to do the following for digging and naughty behaviour:
Get a baked bean can. Put a small handful of pebbles, or whatever inside only a third of the way. (The trick is the sound .....not the weight).
This will take patience, but you telling your dog off for not digging generally doesnt work.
Watch him .. sit outside and let him do his thing.... it will take a while. I dont know what kind of view you have from your kitchen or whatever. If you have quick access from inside the house to outside when he starts to dig, then you may as well view him from inside.
Walk very very quietly and throw the can as close to him as possible. (This is why the sound is more important than the weight). He musnt see you do it. The sound should be unconnected to you.It sounds stupid and my husband and i couldnt stop giggling at first, sneaking around the garden like CIA snipers, but it worked like a charm!!
This is because, if you tell him off when he digs, all he learns is not to do it when you are there. He doesnt get the message not to dig.
But now... there is nobody really around.... and this "thing" comes flying from nowhere everytime he starts to dig. So the message is, even if no-one is around or she is inside, this "thing" flies out of the air and gives me the fright of my life!
After a day or two, i could use it for other things. All i had to do was shake the can, and if he heard that noise, he would instantly obey.
We kept one by the door and if he jumped on guests or made a pest of himself or i told him to go lie down and he ignored me, i just had to rattle the can!!! So simple yet so damn effective.
Dont worry, it weighs nothing and the huskies got plenty of padding. Its the noise. Our dog was the king of our house so there was no cruelty whatsoever. You dont throw it like you are trying to knock someones window out, just toss it as close as you can.
Good luck, it does take patience and try not to giggle when you are stalking him!!!!!
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Old December 4th, 2008, 05:22 AM
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There is a husky 9 months old down the road from us. They have now bought a farm and do quad bikes hires from the bottom to the top of a giant hill. Its 17km up and 17km down. In holiday season time, he does the run up and down at 7am and does the sunset run at 7pm with the customers. (she only allows morning and evening to avoid the heat) Thats 68 kilometers a day and he is still as playful in the swimming pool in between. Just to give you an idea of what they are actually capable of!!!
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Old December 4th, 2008, 10:05 AM
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ashtoreth ashtoreth is offline
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woa, thanks for the tips Kai'smom

in fact I have an idea how to do the sound thing without him watching bwahahhaha /goes plot noise creating thingy
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Old December 4th, 2008, 02:39 PM
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I had the same problem with my female GSD.
I tried reprimanding to get her to stop.....of course that was futile.
After pulling my hair out I figured I needed to work with my dog and comprimise....so I taught her how to dig on command.

I didnt want her digging up the dirt so I started taking her to the local highschool after hours, to the long jump. Its nice soft sand and I didnt feel bad for the kid's having a messed up mound, as they rake it out before use anyway.

So we would play fetch then hit the digging spot.

At first she thought I had completely lost my mind when I started digging through the sand exclaiming to her "dig! dig girl! dig!!". Then in a very cautious manner she began to paw at the sand. I told her what a good girl she was and that was it....she knew exactly what I was asking of her.

She no longer digs in the yard. I just have to make sure I take her diggin' at least once every 2 weeks. It seems to fufill her digging needs.

Is it possible you could put a small(but deep) sand box in the yard?
Or perhaps you have a school nearby with an unsuspecting long jump?
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Old December 4th, 2008, 02:55 PM
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ashtoreth ashtoreth is offline
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Originally Posted by Blackdog22 View Post
I had the same problem with my female GSD.
I tried reprimanding to get her to stop.....of course that was futile.
After pulling my hair out I figured I needed to work with my dog and comprimise....so I taught her how to dig on command.

I didnt want her digging up the dirt so I started taking her to the local highschool after hours, to the long jump. Its nice soft sand and I didnt feel bad for the kid's having a messed up mound, as they rake it out before use anyway.

So we would play fetch then hit the digging spot.

At first she thought I had completely lost my mind when I started digging through the sand exclaiming to her "dig! dig girl! dig!!". Then in a very cautious manner she began to paw at the sand. I told her what a good girl she was and that was it....she knew exactly what I was asking of her.

She no longer digs in the yard. I just have to make sure I take her diggin' at least once every 2 weeks. It seems to fufill her digging needs.

Is it possible you could put a small(but deep) sand box in the yard?
Or perhaps you have a school nearby with an unsuspecting long jump?
note to self, diging is like drugs to huskies, they need their fix
noted hehe
i'll see for a sand box
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Old December 10th, 2008, 08:46 AM
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I have two huskies here at home and will be getting a third for the winter time. I too went through the digging thing especially with my younger male. Our trick was every time we would refill a hole we would first put a bit of his poop in the hole. He would go to re-dig the hole only to find his nose in his own crap! LOL I was lucky enough to witness his first experience and he had the funniest expression on his face ever!!!! LOL

But there is two parts to this. Excercise!!!!!!! 1hr is not enough for a Husky but remember, walking isnt the only form of excercise to give. The need both physical AND mental stimulation!!!! even today if I slack on giving my boys enough excercise they might just remind me it's time to get out more again by digging a fresh hole.
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Old December 10th, 2008, 10:41 AM
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I would definitely increase the exercise. My adult huskies get more than 1 hour a day so they stay mellow. I would go outside with him 100% of the time instead of 60% it will allow you to catch him every time he's doing the behavior and stop it. It will also allow you to bond more with him. Toys can be fun for dogs but they would rather have you playing with them as well. you are going to go through some undesirable behaviors through the ages its all a part of having a puppy and them growing up. I know you have been working with him on obedience and training for pulling (again be careful with the weight he's pulling as it can be damaging at his fragile age). Is he going to OB classes or socializing with other dogs much I find with super high energy dogs such as huskies you need to let them romp around with other dogs to get all of their energy out. Dogs can run faster and for longer than we can!! do you have a dog park near by? I would suggest letting him play with the dogs there as well.

Another idea is giving him a sand box or a digging area where digging is allowed. My boys like to dig themselves little burrows and arent trying to escape. its just part of what huskies do

thanks for saying no to the shock collar. its better to train your dog to respect you and your commands than fear a painful machine.

Best of luck and keep us posted.
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Old December 10th, 2008, 01:47 PM
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He has more than 45 minutes of exercise in the morning, and even more in the evening, we go at the dog park (with other huskies and big dog friends, I avoid the place when theres too much problematic owners -_-;, but I wont go on that subject just yet) We usually spend 1:30/2h in the dogpark, never less than 1:30h, but he gets tired after a while and we walk home (note : we usually jog there too and train him (leash training, we're starting the more sledding commands this weekend actually ^^) then we go back home/groceries, we eat, and he has another walk/jog after, before we go to bed (also gives him time for his business)

So yea, it's really not the lack of exercise :S
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Old December 10th, 2008, 01:54 PM
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Now for a real update on that problem :P

We actually used the noise can idea, it seems to work, or..its just that now there's so much snow, he doesn't dig :P
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