There are a few things that you can do to get your dog to stop getting in the trash. The first thing that you can do is to try to get them to understand that this is not a good thing to do. You can try to use positive reinforcement to get them to understand that they are getting a treat if they stop getting in the trash. You can also try to use punishment to get them to stop. You can use a leash or a physical barrier to keep them from getting in the trash. You can also try to get them to understand that they will get in trouble if they continue to get in the trash.This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without the prior written permission of FOX News Network, LLC.Quotes are displayed in real-time or delayed by at least 15 minutes.Factset provides market data, which is powered and implemented by FactSet Digital Solutions.Refinitiv Lipper provides data on mutual funds and exchange-traded funds (ETFs).Last time on the Acoma Animal Clinic Blog, we discussed dog vomiting and how to avoid it or when to call your vet; this time, we'll talk about one of the most common causes of dog vomiting: getting into the trash! If you're at your wit's end because your dog getting into trash has made a mess or gotten them sick, this blog is for you.When you come home and walk into your kitchen, you'll find trash shredded up and strewn about; the dog has done it again, gotten into the trash.
Why is the dog getting into the trash a problem? If you haven't already read the previous blog, dogs getting into the garbage can cause a number of issues, not just a mess to clean up! Getting into potentially toxic items, or swallowing foreign objects, can cause tears in their digestive tract, blockages, or other complications, which can result in your dog vomiting or worse.
Use these tips to avoid more messes and keep your pup healthy and free of trash!
Keep Them Fed
Scavenger behavior is a major factor in dogs getting into trash; if they are hungry, they will snoop around and find something edible to satisfy that need.If your dog is well fed, whether through frequent meals or otherwise, he or she will be much less likely to go garbage digging.
Up Your Trash Security
Buying a trash can with a childproof latch or finding one small enough to fit inside a closet or cupboard is the simplest way to prevent your dog from getting into trash.They won't be tempted in the first place if the trash can is out of reach of Fido!
Keep Pooch Engaged
Your dog may be getting into the trash not only because they are hungry, but also because they are bored! They require activity and engagement.Purchase a chew toy for your pup to play with and take them on regular walks; as the saying goes, a tired dog is a well-behaved dog!
Fences, Gates, and Crates
Keeping your dog out of reach of the trash, similar to trash security, may be the simplest way to solve the problem. Use baby gates to block off specific sections of your home, or use a crate if you are going to be gone for an extended period of time.Boundaries can be so effective in some cases that they can be removed and the dog will still respect the space.
Training and Observing
If you catch your dog in the act of getting into the trash and quickly and consistently curb the behavior with a sharp 'No' or 'Off,' you can be sure there is a training answer option! Dogs can learn a surprising number of behaviors.
If, despite using all of these techniques, your dog continues to get into the trash, you have a Houdini Dog on your hands! Putting the trash can away or keeping them kenneled should be the final step required to keep them and the trash separate.
If your dog has already gotten into the trash (again!) and swallowed something they shouldn't have, please contact your veterinarian or, if you live in the Tucson area, the Acoma Animal Clinic; we will do everything we can to help you get your pet's health back on track.Nothing beats coming home to a happy, wiggling pup—until you walk into the kitchen and discover that she's knocked over the trash can, shredded papers and containers, and eaten pretty much everything remotely edible from the can.You know you shouldn't correct a dog after the fact because she won't understand why she's being corrected, but it's hard not to be angry when you're facing a refuse debris field and she's grinning at you. What do you do? How do you keep your dog from getting into the trash?
This was one of my most difficult problems with Haley because she had always listened well and responded quickly to training, but she was a trash hound.She would raid the trash while we were gone and would sometimes boldly sneak into the kitchen while we were at home to forage for goodies from the garbage can; she once ate an entire turkey breast carcass!
Some dogs will get into the trash out of boredom, but most dogs will smell something tempting and quickly learn from experience that the trash can contains a treasure trove of tasty tidbits and interesting things to chew on or shred. It's frustrating when your dog does this, but it may help to know that your pup isn't doing it to spite you.Dogs scavenge for food instinctively; they are opportunists (similar to us) and would survive in nature by foraging for food or leftover scraps.However, because your dog is living in your home rather than scavenging in the wild, you'll want to keep her safe from ingesting anything harmful from your trash. Here are some ways to keep your dog from dumpster diving.
1. Store your trash can in a cabinet.
Yes, if you have the cabinet space, that is an obvious solution, but many people must use free-standing trash cans.
2. Get a trash can with a tightly fitting lid.
There are many different types and brands of sealed or lidded trash cans, and some dogs have even figured out how to open cans with step-on pedals to raise the lid.
3. Construct a homemade booby trap deterrent.
A common method is to stack empty soda cans in a pyramid, with one end of a string tied to one of the cans on the bottom of the pyramid and the other end of the string tied to a treat dangled on top of the trash can; if the dog takes the treat, the cans will fall, hopefully creating a negative association with taking things from the trash.This method has worked for some dog owners, but I'm afraid my dog would eat the string.
4. Buy a deterrent device online or in a store.
ScatMats and motion-activated devices that use compressed air or sound to deter pets away from the trash can, such as the Snappy Trainer, can be safe and effective.Before purchasing, carefully examine these devices to ensure that they are safe for your dog; some products are not recommended for sensitive or easily frightened dogs.
5. Teach your dog to avoid the trash can.
When you're at home with your dog, this is a good option, but even a well-trained dog may not be able to resist the enticing contents of a trash can when you leave the house.
6. Keep the trash can out of your dog's reach.
Keeping the trash can in the garage, behind a closed door, or behind a baby gate is frequently the best solution.
Numbers 5 and 6 above worked best for Haley; I wanted her to stay away from the trash can when we were home, but I felt it was asking too much of her to ignore the can if she was left home alone, especially if there was something very tempting in the trash.Here's how I got Haley to ignore the garbage can.
How to Teach Your Dog to Ignore the Trash Can
Keep an eye on your dog's behavior when she's in the kitchen with you.
I still keep an eye on Haley around the trash can in case she needs a reminder, but she's graduated from trash hound to trained hound! When we leave the house, I put the trash can behind a baby gate so she doesn't get tempted or eat something that will make her sick.
If your dog gets into the trash, even if there's nothing edible inside, she may be bored or need more exercise; a good walk or some active playtime before leaving the house can help her burn off some of her excess energy.Giving her a frozen, food-stuffed Kong or toy to work on while you're gone may also keep her busy and out of trouble. Another reason some dogs get into the trash is to attract attention.They've discovered that stealing something from the trash can lead to an exciting game of chase.
Prevention is the best approach when attempting to prevent your dog from getting into the trash, and remember to only correct your dog if you catch her in the act. Have you had issues with your dog being a dumpster diver? What method worked best for you?