dog scratches on door

Estimated reading time: 6 minutes

If you’re a dog owner, the familiar sound of your dog scratching at the door might be an unwelcome part of daily life. Whether it’s a pawing plea to come inside or a sign they want attention, your pup’s door-scratching habit can cause frustration and damage to your home.

One surprising fact is that simple boredom could be leading your pup to scratch up those doors. A tired dog is less likely to cause trouble because they’ve had enough exercise and mental stimulation for one day.

Our post will guide you through actionable strategies customized for our loyal companions with paws. From understanding why dogs scratch at all to effective training techniques, we’ll help you keep those doors scratch-free.

Key Takeaways

  • Understand why dogs scratch doors, such as feeling anxious, bored, or seeking attention.
  • Prevent door scratching by providing regular exercise and mental stimulation to keep your dog happy and calm.
  • Use positive reinforcement training techniques, like offering treats and toys for good behavior near the door while ignoring undesirable scratching behaviors.
  • Consider using door protectors, barriers, and pet-safe deterrents to discourage scratching and safeguard your doors.

Understanding Why Your Dogs Scratch Doors

Dogs scratch doors for several reasons. They might feel bored or anxious, especially if left alone at home. A dog with lots of energy and no way to let it out may start scratching as a way to deal with their feelings.

Another reason can be separation anxiety. This is when dogs get really stressed because they’re home alone. They love you so much that being apart makes them nervous and upset, which can lead to scratching.

Some dogs may scratch because they want something. Maybe they hear noises outside and think there’s danger, or perhaps they simply want to come inside after playing in the yard. Remember, your furry friend doesn’t have words to tell you what they need, so scratching is their way of knocking on the door.

Now let’s move forward and talk about some smart ways you can help stop this behavior!

Strategies to Stop Your Dog from Scratching Doors

Exercise and mental stimulation are key in preventing your dog from scratching the doors. By ensuring that your furry friend is physically and mentally engaged, they will be less likely to exhibit destructive behaviors like door scratching.

Exercise and Mental Stimulation

Keep your dog busy with good activities. This will help stop them from scratching at the door. When dogs get to run and play, they feel happier and calmer. They are less likely to do bad things like scratch or bark by the door.

Teaching your dog new tricks is also a great idea. It makes their brain work hard and keeps them thinking.

You can give your dog toys that make them solve puzzles for treats. These toys keep their mind busy so they don’t think about scratching the door.

Play games like fetch or hide-and-seek with their favorite toys too! These fun times help your dog use up energy and stay sharp, making it easier for you to train them not to scratch the doors anymore.

Train Your Dog Not to Scratch at the Door

Training your dog is key to stopping them from scratching at the door. Use treats, toys, and praise every time they stay calm near a door. This shows them that not scratching gets something good. Dogs love rewards; you’ll see how quickly they learn this new way of acting.

Keep practice sessions short, about 10 minutes each day. During this time work on teaching ‘sit’ or ‘stay’ instead of scratching. Your dog will learn that sitting calmly means happy times with their favorite person – you! With patience and practice, soon your dog won’t think about scratching when they want to go out or come in.

Ignoring Undesirable Behavior

When it comes to addressing your dog’s door scratching, ignoring the undesirable behavior can be an effective strategy. By not giving attention to the scratching, you remove the reinforcement that your dog seeks.

This helps in preventing further instances of door scratching as dogs often engage in this behavior to seek attention or a response from their owners. By withholding that response, you signal to your dog that this behavior will not lead to the desired outcome.

By redirecting your focus and providing positive attention when your dog is calm and not scratching at the door, you reinforce the desirable behavior while minimizing reinforcement for undesirable actions.

This approach encourages your dog to seek out alternative behaviors for attention and ultimately reduces instances of door scratching over time.

Tools and Products to Discourage Scratching

Consider using door protectors and barriers, as well as pet-safe deterrents and repellents to discourage your dog from scratching. To learn more about these effective tools, keep reading for actionable guidance on stopping this unwanted behavior.

Door Protectors and Barriers

To protect your doors from scratches, consider using door protectors and barriers designed specifically for this purpose. You can opt for products like the Clawguard Door Shield to protect your doors from your dog’s scratching behavior.

Easy to Install
CLAWGUARD - The Ultimate Door Scratch Shield for Dog and Cat Clawing

These Door Shields provide extended coverage to door, door frame and wall where dogs scratch most, inside or outside the door.

Simply pop over the door knob and your protected. Patented design makes it easy to install and remove as needed.

  • Installs in seconds
  • No adhesives or hardware needed
  • Frosted clear color to match your decor
Check the Price
We earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.

These durable barriers create a protective layer between your dog’s nails and delicate wood or paint, effectively discouraging scratching. Additionally, you can also drape a sheet over the top edge of the door to prevent scratches and use commercial products such as couch guards or universal protective tape to safeguard commonly scratched areas.

Installing these door protectors and barriers not only prevents further damage but also provides peace of mind knowing that your doors are secure from your dog’s scratching habits.

Pet-Safe Deterrents and Repellents

You can use pet-safe deterrents and repellents if your dog is scratching up the doors. Citronella oil is a useful natural repellent that dogs dislike, so you can spray it near the areas where your dog tends to scratch.

When using these products, make sure to test them in inconspicuous areas first, then wait a few seconds before allowing your dog near the treated area. Providing appropriate alternatives such as chew toys or engaging your dog with physical and mental stimulation can also help decrease their desire to scratch at doors.

dog pushing on door


You’ve learned effective strategies to stop a dog from scratching your doors! These practical tips are easy to implement and can have a significant impact on reducing this behavior. By providing mental and physical stimulation, using positive reinforcement, and employing deterrents, you can successfully train your dog to stop scratching the door.

As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

Written by Tom Cashman

I have grown up with pets for almost fifty years. My family has strong ties to the animal shelter community in Chicago. Currently I have two cats: an orange tabby named Zelda, and a gray mixed named Zander. Like all of my pets, they were adopted from a local animal shelter. Pet Zone represents my passion for sharing with the pet community.

Views: 3
How To Stop Your Dog From Scratching Your Doors

Similar Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.


  1. Great post. My newest dog is wonderful but she has a few traits we are working on. Scratching the door is one of them. Thank you for this great advice!