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Why Does My Dog Like to Run Away?

, by leeboyce

Even though your dog loves you, they may like to run away sometimes. From mating instincts to hunting instincts to just plain boredom – there are many reasons why dogs run away! A dog that runs away can be worrying and frustrating. Here's a breakdown of common reasons a dog might run away and tips on how to stop this behavior.

1. Why do dogs run away?

There can be many reasons why a dog may run away, here are some possible factors:

Curiosity: Dogs are often curious animals and may become attracted to their surroundings and attempt to escape.

Fear: A dog may become fearful because it is threatened, frightened, or stimulated, causing it to try to escape the situation.

Mating Desire: Unneutered dogs may be tempted to run away in search of a mate because of their pursuit of members of the opposite sex.

Social Desire: Dogs are social animals and sometimes they will try to find other dogs or humans to form social relationships with.

Boredom: A lack of adequate stimulation and activity may cause a dog to become bored and attempt to escape the home environment.

Lack of exercise: If dogs don't get enough exercise and exercise, they may try to escape to get more room to roam.

Separation Anxiety: A dog may become anxious about being left at home, trying to escape in search of its owner or companion.

Territoriality: Some dogs may try to expand their territory, especially unneutered male dogs.

2. Should you punish your dog for running away?

Punishment may not be an effective way to stop your dog from escaping. Dogs associate punishment with whatever they do when corrected. If you punish your dog when they come home, your dog will associate the punishment with going home. As a result, your puppy may become afraid of you or your home and be less likely to come back.

Unless you catch your dog while escaping, punishing them is unlikely to reduce any escape behavior. So do your best to reinforce your dog’s “good” behavior.

3. How to stop a dog from escaping?

There are several steps you can take to prevent your dog from running away and running away. These include:

Invest time in lifelong positive reinforcement obedience training to train reliable commands such as recall or stay. These may one day save your dog's life.

When first teaching your dog to recall, don't put the dog on the leash every time you call them back, as this will teach them that returning always means being on the leash again.

Never let your dog off leash in an unsafe or enclosed area.

Invest in a GPS collar to track your dog's whereabouts if they get lost.

Get plenty of structured exercise and activities to keep your dog less eager to take risks. For example, you can buy dog toys that your dog is interested in to divert his attention.

Make sure your yard is properly enclosed and that walls or fences are too high for your dog to jump.

Neuter your male dogs so they won't try to chase any female dogs in heat.

If your dog is running away from you, try not to chase them. Instead, try walking in the opposite direction and let them chase you.

If your dog has a noise phobia or anxiety disorder, make sure to keep his environment calm and controlled during stressful times. It's worth using a calming supplement to help your dog cope with stress.

A running dog

4. In conclusion

Dogs that run away from home may become disoriented and face dangers such as traffic and wildlife. Likewise, dogs that run away from their owners on walks may also be at risk for accidents. In cities, traffic is the main threat, while in rural areas there may be threats from wild animals or strange dogs. Using a traction tool and training basic commands like "sit" and "stay here" can help prevent accidents. Owner responsibility and care are vital, ensuring a safe environment and regular training are provided to reduce the risk of the dog escaping or having an accident.

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