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Why Does My Dog Dig on the Couch: 9 Reasons Why!

Expensive and cozy couches being damaged by our furry friends is probably the last thing you want. Believe it or not, this is actually a very common tendency of dogs. Hence, dog owners around the world know that this can be problematic.

Why does my dog dig on the couch?

This can primarily be attributed to instinctual behaviors. Dogs also dig on couches to hide belongings, mark their territory, or to dig a den. Sometimes special hormonal responses to pregnancy, or psychological disorders can also cause this behavior. In that case, you better take him to a vet.

But this just barely summarizes the entire idea. We have covered all the reasons behind your dog’s such behavior. 

Let’s delve right into it without wasting any time!

Dogs Dig on Couches: 9 Reasons That You Should Know About!

Surprisingly there are multifarious reasons behind this tendency. But let me break the good news first! In most cases, this isn’t normally an indication of any disease. So your dog is safe. 

As for the bad news, if this habit persists, it can be a burden on your wallet.

So, before trying to nip the issue in the bud, we need to understand the underlying reasons. Let’s look at some of the common reasons.

Reason 1: Instinctual Behavior

Like human beings, dogs also inherit several behavioral traits from their ancestors. These are called instinctual behaviors. 

Instinctual behaviors are normally innate and hard to change.

For example, Terriers, Malamutes, Beagles, and Collies are dog breeds that love to dig. Dogs from these heritages are likely to dig owing to their ancestral behavior patterns. 

Reason 2: Spilt Food And Drinks

Your house can get wild during parties. Chances are you’ve spilled your drink, or have dropped your food on your couch. 

In that case, your dog might dig couches if they’re smelling foods or drinks. 

Dogs have around 300 million olfactory receptors. They usually dig to try to uncover what they smell. Garlic leftovers can be really intense. But, whether dogs can eat garlic is definitely a concern. 

Reason 3: To Hide Precious Belongings

Another explanation for the couch digging is that he’s trying to hide something. 

The tendency to hide precious treasures is not restricted to just human beings. Dogs often try to hide their favorite toys and bones. 

And they often choose couches as their holy grail for hiding belongings. But why couch? Well, that will forever be beyond our comprehension. 

So, if you see your dogs digging on your couch, check for bones and toys the next day!

Reason 4: Out of Boredom

Hm, are you spending less time with your pupper? Perhaps you’re overburdened at work. But, have you bought your furry friend toys to pass time in your absence? 

You’ll be surprised to know that these are things you should actually consider. 

Because often the root of your dog’s digging issue can be boredom. This is often diagnosed as a coping mechanism by veterinarians. 

Buying the best toys for your doggo, or daily exercise can fulfill your dog’s adrenaline requirements. 

Check out our recommendations for amazing dog toys:

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These toys will keep your dogs entertained for hours daily! So, you will have happier dogs, and a non-torn couch. 

Reason 5: Anxiety

Interestingly enough, dogs can dig on couches to indicate anxiousness. A dog’s anxiety can be attributed to a plethora of reasons. 

Perhaps you’re leaving your home, maybe you’re having guests over. You could even bring home new pets. All these scenarios can make your dogs anxious. But over time if your dog gets familiarized with these, its tendency will stop as well. 

Feeding dogs sweet potatoes, eggs, and goat milk can help calm their anxiety. 

Reason 6: Pursuit of a Good Night’s Rest

Does your dog love sleeping on your couch? If so, it’s possible your dog is digging it to make it more warm and cozy. 

Dogs usually dig couches to try and create their own den. This is an instinctual habit that has been passed on from ancestors. Dogs are ancestrally den-animals. 

They may dig and move in circles to make their sleeping spaces more comfortable. This tendency is observed in the wild as well! 

This is comparable to our tendency of puffing up pillows before sleeping. 

Reason 7: To Mark Their Territory

This is more common in the wild. But, domesticated animals do this as well owing to their primal instincts. 

Did you know a dog’s paws have glands that bear its unique smell? So when you see a torn threadbare couch, your dog is actually marking its new territory. 

Reason 8: Maternal Behavior

It’s very common for a dog to scratch or dig your couch during pregnancy. This is a hormonal response to create a sort of nest for the coming puppies.

It’s best not to interrupt her at this. Instead, rejoice at the thought of new puppers blessing your home!

So, here’s a small tip for you. After the 5th week of pregnancy, your mommy-dog will require 10% more energy. During this time, consider healthy treats like carrots for your dogs.

Reason 9: Tendency to Imitate

Have you brought home a new pet that scratches your couch? It’s very common for other pets to do the same. 

This is because the imitation tendency is very common in dogs. It’s very normal for dogs to try to imitate their siblings or buddies. 

Thankfully, this is harmless for the dogs, but not so much for your couch. 

Oof, there you go, we’ve covered almost every common reason behind dogs digging on your couch. But there are some exceptional cases bearing health implications.

Exceptions That May Require Medical Attention!

Previously, we’ve mentioned that most reasons are harmless for your dogs. But, there are a few exceptions. 

If your dog has the following problems, it’s best to give it professional attention. 

Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder

This disorder refers to your dog’s obsessive need to scratch the couch. This can be identified by their incessant digging. 

This goes on even after moving them. It goes to the point where they can’t resist themselves. 

If such behavior is observed, contact the vets.

Mental Disorder

Anxiety issues are usually cured by themselves over time. But, in case you notice a prolonged behavior deterioration in your dog, it’s most likely a mental disorder. 

This can be attributed to prolonged depression, sickness, dizziness, or seizures. In such cases, contact the veterinarians immediately. 

FAQs

Question: Is crating dogs considered cruel?

Answer: Not really, it’s actually a very useful training. Crating utilizes your dog’s tendency to live in a den. Many dogs actually enjoy staying in crates. This gives them a sense of safety, and they stop making dens elsewhere. 

Question: What are some smells dogs don’t like? 

Answer: Dogs do not enjoy the smell of bitter apple, citrus, hot pepper. Spray the essence of these flavors to your furniture to keep dogs from scratching them.

Question: Do chihuahuas scratch furniture often? 

Answer: Yes, chihuahuas are known to be destructive breeds. So they are very likely to scratch your couches. Sometimes, experienced trainers are needed to stop chihuahuas from damaging your beloved couch. 

End Note

With that, we’ve reached the end of our discussion. That’s all we have on “why does my dog dig on the couch”. If your dog prolongs this tendency, consider contacting local veterinarians. 

We hope this article has been of value to you. Consider looking through our blog for more interesting articles related to your furry friend. 

Until then, take care of yourself, and of course, your best buddy!