By Hannah Fitchett on Jun 1, 2023

When you have a canine that chases a squirrel up a tree or a bunny right into a bush at each alternative they get then they doubtless have a excessive prey drive. Although chasing wildlife is pure for canines, it may well result in hassle on their walks. Under we discover the the explanation why canines chase small animals and learn how to cease this explicit conduct.

What are the hazards of canines chasing wild animals?

A canine chasing wildlife is a really pure conduct however in some cases, it may be harmful. These risks embody:

  1. Accidents: A canine can simply break a bone or get hit by a automobile if they’re chasing a small animal and never wanting the place they’re going.
  2. Turning into misplaced: Generally canines are so quick within the pursuit of their prey that it’s simple to lose sight of them. They will simply develop into misplaced if they’re in an unfamiliar place. A monitoring collar is a good suggestion for canines with excessive prey drives. 
  3. Illnesses: Some wildlife could also be contaminated with harmful ailments resembling rabies. These ailments are carried by wildlife resembling foxes, raccoons, and skunks and may be contracted by your canine.

What causes canines to chase wildlife?

Canines chase wildlife attributable to their prey-drive which is left over from their wolf ancestors. The pure intuition of a wolf to stalk and kill small creatures nonetheless stays in canines.  A domesticated canine could not want to search out their meals however the pure intuition to take action remains to be in place. Their mind is wired to hunt squeaking injured animals which is why they at all times take the chance to stalk a rabbit or pounce on a mouse.

Find out how to cease your canine from chasing wild animals

Fortunately, there are various methods to cease a canine from chasing wildlife while additionally permitting them to play out their pure instincts.

1. Directing your canine’s pure instincts

You’ll be able to direct your canine’s pure need to hunt and kill away from small animals and in the direction of toys for top prey drive canines. These toys mimic the squeaking and searching of small injured animals and permit your canine to really feel like they’re searching and killing however in a protected and enjoyable surroundings. 

Such toys embody: 

  • Tug ropes
  • Squeaky toys
  • Fetch toys
  • Flirt poles

2. Keep away from areas with numerous wildlife

You’ll be able to’t take away your canine’s pure need to chase wildlife however you may take away the wildlife out of your canine’s walks. Attempt to decide on areas the place you understand there received’t be quite a lot of roaming wildlife. Alternatively, you may take your canine to off-leash canine parks which the wildlife has already discovered to keep away from.

3. Primary instructions

Train your canine fundamental instructions to forestall them from chasing wildlife or get them again throughout the chase. Primary instructions embody:

  • Watch me” or “Depart it”: For use while you discover your canine has noticed an animal and is stalking them or watching them intently. 
  • Come” or “Right here”: For use as a recall after your canine has given chase and to interrupt them out of their fixation.

Understanding the physique language of a canine about to chase a small animal can be helpful. In the event you discover your canine is beginning to stroll very slowly, with their physique a lot decrease to the bottom and their eyes vast and fixated, they’re doubtless stalking and about to present chase. 

4. Canine collar bells

The ultimate methodology to forestall your canine from chasing wildlife entails attaching a bell to their collar. The sound of the bell serves as an alert for the wildlife, signaling that one thing is coming their means. This offers them ample alternative to fade earlier than your canine even has an opportunity to see them. That is additionally good if you wish to take your canine tenting, to push back greater animals resembling bears. 


The intuition to chase and catch wildlife is hard-wired into your canine’s mind. Although the conduct may be very pure, it may well result in disastrous outcomes if left unchecked. From damaged bones to deadly ailments the dangers are plentiful. By understanding your canine’s pure prey drive and channeling it away from wildlife you and your canine can take pleasure in your walks collectively with out disturbing the locals.  

In regards to the Writer:

Hannah is the proud canine mother of Makai, a Wolfdog with a penchant for naps and snacks. Hannah has a robust love for all animals however a particular fondness of canines. With a Masters diploma in Chemistry and a love for writing, Hannah goals to share the newest scientific research and knowledgeable data with canine lovers worldwide by her weblog Howling Wolf Pack.

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