View Full Version : question from first time cavie owner

16th June 2007, 03:29 AM
Ok, here is my question. I have a schnauzer and a pug who have been using a doggie door for years with no problem. Now I have a precious 13 week old cavalier puppy who has learned how to use the doggie door like a pro. I recently noticed her looking under the fence and starting to dig. My question is....are cavaliers natural diggers????? Would she be likely to dig out under the fence if left unsupervised????? I have NEVER left her unsupervised, but in the fall I will be returning back to a teaching job, and was hoping that I could leave her with the other two that use the doggy door during the day. They have never tried digging out. But, I don't want to worry myself sick over the possibility of her getting out. Since I have never owned this breed before, I was just wondering if they were natural diggers. Thanks for any information. Judy (mom of Dixie)

16th June 2007, 03:46 AM
I dont think digging is a significant breed trait. I have three and have never noticed a major propensity. If your dog DOES, you can train a dog not to dig out of a yard. Give the dog a special place where digging is encouraged--a dig box, or a special digging area in the yard--and when the dog digs inappropriately, redirect the behavior to the appropriate place.

Another note: I would be concerned if you were leaving the dog with access outside without anyone home and no supervision. Not only could the dog get out (via digging or something else), but cavaliers are often snatched from backyards by thieves.

16th June 2007, 03:49 AM
Hey Judy, I've only had Cavaliers in my life for a matter of months so I certainly am no expert on the breed. However I do think that any breed of dog has the potential to dig, though I am sure certain breeds are more notorious than others. If you notice your Cavalier puppy digging near the fence now then I would certainly be trying to nip that in the bud before it becomes an entrenched behaviour.

One cheap solution and may work if he is just digging in the one spot would be to lay some chicken wire an inch or so under the soil. Perhaps once he has dug down to that & then finds he can dig no further he may stop. Then again, he could just move on to a new location.

Because we live on acres it isn't possible for us to have a completely dog proof fence, so our guys are just not allowed out in the backyard when we are not home. We are lucky to have a very large veranda all around the house & we've made that the outside dog area for when we are not at home. Do you have an area in your yard that perhaps you could section off to make it safe for your dog?

16th June 2007, 06:48 AM
It definitely varies by individual, but many breeders say this breed does often love to dig. Many sink bricks or concrete down a foot or two below their fence line to prevent dogs escaping. Some are expert climbers and jumpers too! :) I once saw a pic one breeder had posted of a cavalier hanging off the top of a 5 foot wall! :o If your puppy is digging already at a fence edge I would think you'd need to sink something like this well below the fence line to be safe, just generally.

A broader point though and personal perspective here but based on a lot of very tragic stories -- generally I think it is often risky to leave purebred dogs with access to a garden where they are not supervised. This can vary by individual circumstance, but the rate of theft is very high in the US, UK and Ireland and stories regularly come up on the cavalier lists and boards of people with cavaliers stolen from their yards. Because of the cost of cavaliers anywhere in North America I would consider this breed at especially high risk of theft there.

Something to consider anyway. I've yet to find a dog that isn't happy inside and typically happier than outdoors. :) Most however will need someone to come in midday to take them out for a walk.

16th June 2007, 11:07 AM

Yes some do dig, others climb some do both! My parents lad Jake dug his way out quite often so my dad ended up sinking chicken wire fencing about 6 inches down and that soon stopped him!!

Would agree with what Karlin says about letting them have the run of the Backgarden unsupervised, there are many thefts every day of dogs of all breeds who are left in these circumstances so basically if you can get home at lunch time to let them out for a few minutes this is far safer!!

16th June 2007, 02:37 PM
Wow! I guess I'm lucky that I have not had a problem with digging with my crew..... Maybe I shouldn't have said that. :o:rolleyes:

16th June 2007, 02:56 PM
Wow! I guess I'm lucky that I have not had a problem with digging with my crew..... Maybe I shouldn't have said that. :o:rolleyes:

:lol: Ha Ha!! Never Tempt Fate!! :lol:

16th June 2007, 05:57 PM
My first CKCS was a digger when he was a puppy/young dog, but thankfully not this one! He's a big chewer!!