Q:

How can someone keep their dog from scratching the door?

A:

Quick Answer

A dog owner can keep his or her dog from scratching the door by implementing the following solutions: eliminate the cause, manage the environment, train an incompatible behavior, change the subject, provide an alternative and reinforce or redirect the habit. Determining the underlying cause will determine which solution is going to be the most effective. Door scratching can be a sign of distress and separation anxiety, or may simply indicate that the dog would like to go outside.

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Full Answer

To eliminate the cause, consider purchasing and installing a doggie door, so that the dog can come and go as it pleases. To manage the environment, be more attentive to when the dog may need to be let out, and when the dog would like to come back inside. Dog owners can also consider positively reinforcing the behavior of not scratching the door, and by providing negative consequences for the scratching. For example, some dog owners will wait until the dog does not scratch at the door for a certain amount of time before opening the door.

If the scratching is a result of separation anxiety or distress, providing more exercise in the dog's daily routine may be just what it needs.

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