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How to Keep Dogs From Digging in Flower Beds

By Cayden Conor ; Updated September 21, 2017

Dogs like to dig in flowerbeds, especially flower beds that are not treated with mulch because it is much easier for them to dig into than grass is. A dog might dig a wallow in the ground to cool off during hot days or it might dig to bury bones or, because it sees a toad or another small animal in the flowerbed. There are many ways to keep a dog from digging in the flowerbed, including setting aside an area of the yard just for the dog to dig to its hearts content.

Remove all mulch surrounding the plants, if any. Remove all weeds and damaged plants. Rake the soil so that it is level.

Measure the width and depth of the flowerbed. If you choose the chicken wire method, purchase enough chicken wire to cover the ground in the flowerbed.

Roll out the chicken wire. If you do not have many plants, cut the chicken wire so that it fits the shape of the flowerbed. Place the chicken wire 4 to 6 inches away from the plants. It is difficult for the dog to dig that close to the plant, and the space gives plants plenty of room to grow.

Bury the dog's feces in the areas the dog is digging in the flowerbed. This method may not work for all dogs, but most dogs will smell it through the ground and will not dig where they smell their own feces.

Install a knee high decorative fence around the flowerbed to keep smaller dogs out of the flowerbed. Choose fencing that is not open near the bottom (such as a picket fence) to discourage the dog from squeezing under the fence.

Cover the plants with screening used to keep bugs off the plants. Train the dog not to go near the flowerbed. Remove the screening after the dog is trained to stay away from the flowerbed. You have to catch it going near the flowerbed and give it a correction each time it goes near the flowerbed, so this is time-consuming, as you must be outside with the dog whenever it is outside.


Things You Will Need

  • Chicken wire (wide spaced and light, not the heavy duty chicken wire)
  • Fencing
  • Shovel
  • Wire cutters
  • Screen plant covering

About the Author


Cayden Conor has been writing since 1996. She has been published on several websites and in the winter 1996 issue of "QECE." Conor specializes in home and garden, dogs, legal, automotive and business subjects, with years of hands-on experience in these areas. She has an Associate of Science (paralegal) from Manchester Community College and studied computer science, criminology and education at University of Tampa.