Why Do Some Dogs Leave Home?
SEARCHING for missing dogs can be stressful for owners.
Dogs of Muswellbrook have been on the run lately, roaming town whenever they get a chance.
But, according to BEYOND Dog Training’s Erin Williams MDI (CPDT), there is a range of reasons why local furry friends could be leaving home, and a number of solutions to avoid the heartache.
“There is a steady rise in the number of dogs escaping from their yards just in our shire alone,” she said.
“Dogs that escape end up displaced or lost elsewhere far from their home and eventually end up in the pound, injured or killed on the roads; involved in fights with other dogs; predating on native fauna; chasing, maiming or killing other household pets such as cats, rabbits and guinea pigs; and chasing and biting people.
“Repeat offenders can be frustrating for both their owners and the local shire council rangers who attempt to keep everyone safe.
“Rangers are only doing their job in order to fulfil the responsibilities handed to them.”
Ms Williams said owners did not always understand they were liable for any damage or injury caused by their runaway dog.
“This can include property damage, fees for impoundment and possibly fines for breach of local shire guidelines,” she said.
“You can avoid a fine by ensuring your dog is microchipped and registered.”
Ms Williams said reasons for dogs leaving their backyard include being left alone for a long time, without interacting with anyone; searching for adventure because they have a boring environment; being an active breed and requiring more exercise; or being rewarded when escaping.
There is also the possibility a dog can leave because they are afraid.
“This is especially common in dogs who suffer from anxieties such as storm phobia or noise sensitivity, such as during fireworks, or who lack confidence and simply need support and companionship from another living being,” Ms Williams said.
“Sadly, some dogs are neglected or mistreated and live a sad life, which motivates them to resort to escaping their less than ideal conditions.
“Dogs whose needs are satisfied and who live a happy life with their owners and families, generally have no desire to escape their yards.”