Dog Scratching Carpet

When the dog is scratching the carpet, this is considered a destructive behavior and should be corrected. However, in order to correct this behavior, it is important to know the causes why the dog is displaying this behavior.

Scratching the Carpet

Dogs may instinctively scratch the carpet, especially when preparing to go to sleep, as they like to mark the spot. You may observe that the dog will return to the same spot when he wants to lie down again.

However, the scratching behavior may become an obsession and this can be a problem.

Causes of Dog Scratching Carpet

Dogs may scratch, as this is an instinctive behavior, but if your dog has been trained not to scratch, this behavior can indicate that the dog is stressed or has a medical problem.

Most of the times, dogs are scratching excessively when they are affected by stress. Stress can be triggered by various factors:

  • Separation anxiety, if the dog has been separated from a previous owner or even if you are away from home for several hours
  • A disease, which can cause pain and stress the pet. Any kind of medical problem can lead to stress, so a veterinary checkup is needed to find the exact problem
  • Changes in the home (i.e. rearranging the furniture, buying new carpets)
  • A new pet in the house or a new family member

Scratching the carpet is a behavior that may also be due to the fact that the dog is bored and he needs to spend his energy. A bored dog may also scratch other areas in the home and even his own skin.

How to Eliminate Excessive Scratching

The problem causing the scratching behavior has to be established. If there are no medical problems affecting your dog and he is not bored or stressed, you can train your dog not to scratch the carpet anymore by teaching him that this is not an acceptable behavior. Use a sharp No and give some time out for your dog, so he realizes that you don’t agree with him scratching the carpet.

However, if there is a medical problem causing this behavior, the dog needs treatment. The treatment will vary according to each medical problem in part.

If your dog is affected by stress, this can be treated with several methods:

  • Therapy
  • Spending more time with your pet and playing with him, especially if the stress is due to separation anxiety
  • Medication
  • Alternative treatments such as aromatherapy

A dog that is bored should get more activities and toys to chew. Firstly, you will have to teach your dog that scratching the carpet is not a desirable behavior and that he can spend his energy on chewing or scratching other toys or scratching posts, if needed.

Also, you may want to give your dog more exercise, so that he spends his energy in a constructive manner. Consult your vet about your pet’s exercise needs and his diet.