No matter how much we may love our dogs, there’s no denying that they can make a real mess at times.
One of the most common issues dog owners face is their pet’s propensity for digging through the bin, normally while the owner is out of the house and the dog is alone.
If you’re finding that your dog is consistently getting into the rubbish bin and making a mess, there are a few things you can do to help stop this behaviour.
The best option is to keep the bin secure in an area that the dog cannot access. If this is tricky then a bin with a lockable lid that can be secured should be the next choice. If these aren’t possible options, then consistently making sure the bin is empty will also help to prevent your dog from being tempted to raid it.
Why is my dog raiding the rubbish bin?
There could be a few reasons why your dog is raiding the rubbish bin.
Firstly, they may simply be looking for food. If your dog is not well-fed then they may see the bin as a potential source of food.
Dogs are also scavengers and if they can smell something interesting that is in the bin then, chances are, they’ll have a go at getting to it, either to eat it or to play with it.
It could also be that your dog is boredom.
If they are left alone for long periods of time with nothing to do then they may start to see the bin as a source of entertainment.
Lastly, it could be that your dog is simply curious and wants to see what’s inside the bin.
Dogs are nosy creatures by nature and if they see something that piques their interest, they’re likely to want to investigate further.
What should I do if I come home and my dog has emptied the bin?
If you come home and find that your dog has managed to get into the bin and make a mess, the best thing to do is to clean it up straight away.
If you leave it, there’s a chance your dog will see the mess as an opportunity to play or to eat whatever they can find.
In terms of what to do with the dog, the answer is simply that you cannot do anything.
Some people may claim that punishment will work but the reality is that your dog will have no idea why he is being punished.
To him, digging in the bin was fun. You were at work/shopping/at the pub, so he found something interesting to do.
There’s nothing to be gained by punishing your dog after he has emptied the bin.
You’ll just frighten him and he may associate your return home with punishment.
All you can do is clean up and make sure that, in future, you make sure that the bin is out of reach or secure.
Why do I need to stop my dog from raiding the rubbish bin?
Aside from the obvious mess that it makes, there are a few other reasons why you may want to stop your dog from raiding the rubbish bin.
Firstly, there is the hygiene issue.
Rubbish bins are full of germs and bacteria which can be harmful to your dog if ingested.
There is also the danger of sharp objects.
If your dog is rummaging through the bin they could easily cut themselves on a piece of glass or metal.
There is also the issue of food waste.
If your dog is consistently eating from the bin then they are likely to become overweight and obese. This can lead to a number of health problems including diabetes, joint problems and respiratory issues.
The type of waste in the bin could also cause serious problems for your dog.
There are many things that we throw into the rubbish which, if ingested by your dog could cause choking or even poisoning.
Things such as chicken bones, plastic wrappers and certain fruit and vegetable waste are among many things that could result in significant problems for your dog if he were to eat them.
How can I stop my dog from raiding the rubbish bin?
The best way to stop your dog from raiding the rubbish bin is to make sure that the bin is inaccessible to them.
This could mean keeping it in a room that they cannot access or, if this isn’t possible, making sure that the bin is secured with a lid that they cannot open.
You should also make sure that your dog is well-fed. A full stomach will deter them from rummaging through the bin in search of food.
If your dog is bored then you may want to consider getting them some toys or providing them with more exercise.
A tired dog is less likely to want to raid the bin.
Finally, you could try using a deterrent spray on the bin.
This type of spray is designed to deter animals from wanting to go near certain objects.
You can buy these sprays from most pet stores but not all dogs are deterred by them and some even find them attractive.
If your dog is constantly raiding the rubbish bin then it’s important to take action to stop them.
Not only is it unsightly and unhygienic, but it could also be harmful to your dog’s health.
By making the bin inaccessible, secure or by possibly using a deterrent spray, you can help to put a stop to this problem.