How To Keep Dogs Out Of Trash

A Dog Begging For Food Just Tear Down A Bin To Counter Hunger Without Being Too Obvious

Discussing how to create a secure environment for your pet at home goes beyond merely storing medications safely in a cupboard or selecting certain types of plants for your home.

Rather, you need to take into account your pet’s safety against the risks that accompany your plastic trashcan (e.g., trying to knock it to the ground, eating the trash, and other things).

Why Do Dogs Love To Get Into The Trash?

In order to find answers to this question, we begin by understanding why animals manifest these kinds of behaviors. The later paragraphs provide possible reasons as to why your dog loves trash.

They Smell Something Irresistible

One of the major reasons why your dog is constantly drawn into trash cans is due to his ultra-sensitive sense of smell that is capable of picking up all interesting smells that your trash has. [1] As a matter of fact, everything you put in your trash can be very interesting to your dog and he will make every possible way just to investigate explore the trash inside your garbage bin.

Your puppy does not necessarily intend to create a huge mess for you to fix. He is more likely very intrigued about the smells present in the bin and the best thing to do is to train your dog to stop getting into the trash.

They Are Bored, Frustrated, or Anxious

Like many owners, your dog can get bored too! The boredom that your dog feels can be a gateway to various behavior issues. Boredom hits your dog when he does not get enough stimulation, both mentally and physically. This will compel him to try and find his own entertainment and digging through your garbage could be very entertaining for them.

If dogs enjoy getting into the trash can, they are most likely wanting to get your attention. So, the next time, if you catch your dog digging the garbage bin, try giving him your full consciousness to prevent him dig up unnecessary garbage from the bin anymore.

Your Dog Is Hungry

As your dog may feel hungry, he might think that dumpster diving and feeding over leftover food, can be a resort for him to satisfy his hunger.

Always pay attention to what your dog is doing in the trash can, whether he’s eating something from the garbage (like spoiled food) or just throwing stuff around as trash can be very attractive, in terms of scent, and your dog might think that there is food in there to feast on.

Stick Those Papers Into The Bin

7 Ways To Keep Your Dog Out Of The Trash

Keep Your Trash Can Out Of Your Dog’s Reach

In the very first place, you should reduce your canine’s access to garbage bins and prevent him from making a mess or feed over the food that you have thrown.

After all, the last thing you want to see is your trash scattered all over your kitchen floor. To avoid this, you can have simple gestures like hiding your trash in the bathroom, garage, your room, and kitchen- literally behind every closed door.

It can also be a great idea to hide your trash inside your pantry or under the sink. At this point, your pet can no longer cause further trouble and feed on the leftovers in your kitchen garbage.

If you resort to this option you should always make sure that the pantry door is closed at all times as dogs tend to find clever ways to look for a treasure trove of trash and food scraps. However, this option would not work if you have a forgetful family member.

Additionally, if your dog is intelligent enough to open a cabinet, you have to use a child-safe lock for you to hide your trash in these areas. Basically, keeping it hidden and placing a lid over is supposed to do the job for a cleaner home.

Use Baby Gates

Baby gates can be very effective in limiting your dog’s access to different places in your home from your garage, bathroom, and up to your pantry. It is also effective in limiting your pet’s access to literally almost all trash like bathroom trash, and kitchen trash.

Upgrade Your Trash Bins

To deal with a scavenging pet, you can resort to changing your trash bin. You could look for a bin with a lid and a lock or one that could not easily be knocked down to the floor. You can also resort to putting scent eliminators that may mask the smells that your bin has.

Provide Enough Mental & Physical Exercise

If you noticed that your pet digs through the trash, it is basically because he has too much energy. Thus, it could be possible that your dog must have more exercise just to tire himself.

Not only will you keep your pet dog safe and away from harmful trash, but it would also be helpful to have your pet develop good health and be in well-managed weight. There are numerous physical activities that your pet can do to burn off excess energy.

An Example Of Excited Dogs Who Had Just Eaten Their Meals

You and your pet can spend some time outside the house and play fetch. You can also go for a jog with other fur parents and other fitness enthusiasts or teach your pup new cool tricks. This would clearly keep you and your pet healthy and would build the bond and trust you have with your pet dog.

Additionally, you can have mental stimulation for your dogs at your house which is another way to keep your dog from boring himself. If you do not have time to spare to stimulate your pup’s brain, you can always seek advice from your veterinarian and give you an idea on what to purchase as the most suitable mental stimulating toy for your pet.

Give Him Something To Churn Or Lick

Your pet may simply see trash cans as a way to keep himself busy. If that is the case, in order for you to get rid of your dog’s bad behavior, you might consider keeping your pet from being bored. One way of doing it is keeping your dog’s mouth busy and away from trash cans by giving him something to lick or chew on.

Particularly, you can give your dog chew toys or dental chews and leave your dog chewing for hours. It is undeniably true that training your pets can be a tedious task. While you spend long hours training your dog useful tricks, you can actually have the easiest way to just give your dog something that he can play with to keep him busy and lead him away from the trash can.

Train The Command “Leave It”

Dog owners suggest that during the early years, you teach your pup the command “leave it” as this would keep your dog away from the waste in the trash can. Keeping your dog away from garbage would prevent them from eating dangerous garbage like food scraps that could get stuck through your dog’s intestinal tract which can put your dog’s health at risk.

In teaching your dog the “leave it” command, you need to have two different treats. One should be high value, and the other, a low value treat. Hold the two treats in both hands. Reach out your fist with the low-value treat to your dog and let him sniff and say, “leave it”. After he finishes sniffing, reward him with the high-value treat and say “yes” or “good dog”.

You can progress to a much harder level and reward your dog as long as he acknowledges the command. Once your dog already understands the direction, you will no longer have trouble keeping your dog to stay away from trash cans

Use Hot Sauce Or Strong Essential Oils

Dogs are not avid fans of spicy things or strong scents from essential oils which means using a little hot sauce or oils would do the trick. Using it as an effective deterrent can discourage your do to go through trash cans instead of using loud deterrent devices. Moreover, no one, even your dog, can stand the strong scent of ammonia.

You can simply give your dog a taste of the spicy sauce, and later on, the odor of it would keep your dog from coming near the trash can. Do not forget to place a small amount of the spicy sauce or essential oil near the trash can and your bin would instantly become dog-proof.

The unpleasant odor and taste of the hot sauce and the strong scent of essential oils are effective in masking the exciting scents your dog smells from the trash can. However, you must know that this training method is not a long-term solution for your dog but it would buy you time to create a better, more efficient way to keep your dog away from the trash can.
A Person Was Walking When He Saw A Dog Wondering With A Dirty Muzzle

Frequently Asked Questions

What happens if your dog eats trash?

If your dogs eat trash (feeding off from leftover food), they might be at risk of bacteria, critters, and parasites which can be very dangerous to your dogs’ health. If in any case, your dogs appear to be sick, having a moment talking with your vet would not do you any harm. Your pet’s vet is more than qualified to determine the cause of your pet’s sickness.

How long does garbage gut last in dogs?

Garbage usually lasts around 72 hours before it is expelled out of your pet’s gut. However, if your pet is not lucky enough, an exaggerated reaction from your pet may occur. The reactions include signs of lethargy, fever, vomiting, and diarrhea.

Why won’t my dog stop getting in the trash?

Your dog won’t stop getting into the trash because of one particular stimulus; the scent coming from the bin. The act of breaking your dog’s habit can be done alone or with the supervision of a practicing professional. If you are quite unsure, you can always consult your vet for clarifications.


Keeping your dog away from your trash can be very frustrating as your pet could be very stubborn. However, there is no need for you to worry as there are various ways to help break your dog’s habit.
Always bear in mind the in order for you to address the problem, you have to figure out the very root cause of it.

The post How To Keep Dogs Out Of Trash first appeared on Well Pet Coach.