Why Do Dogs Run Away

Why Do Dogs Run Away?


You might wonder, even though I provide my furry friend with all the love and care of the world, Why Do Dogs Run Away? Dogs running away from home is a common problem that even the long and robust fences can’t guard against.

In most cases, dogs will come back after taking a stroll. Still, walking around alone in the neighborhood may be dangerous for dogs. They become susceptible to kidnappings, getting lost, getting hurt and there’s always a risk that your dog may never find his way back.

So, here’s a guide on the reasons why dogs run away and how to keep them safe:

Why do dogs run away? 6 reasons why they like to escape

dog needs to travel

Your dog’s running away from the house doesn’t mean that they do not love you, but there are specific triggers that compel your dog to escape. Here we are discussing six of the most common ones:

Fear, Frustration, and Stress

The most common reason for dogs running away comes from is becoming frightened or frustrated. As a dog owner, you would know how much your dog hates loud sounds such as:

  • Gunfire
  • Construction Noises
  • Fireworks
  • Sirens
  • Thunderstorms

Due to having a frequency range of 40-60000Hz, which is much higher than humans (20-20000Hz), these sounds would hurt dogs’ ears much more than ours. Thus, due to a stimulus reaction, most dogs run away.


Another reason why your dog might run away is due to the lack of fun and entertainment in his life. It’s highly likely that your canine friend may have made some friends in the vicinity and runs over there every day to play.

That’s why it is strongly advised to play and exercise with your dog every day so that your furry friend may have his fill of entertainment.

dog running away from home

Separation Anxiety

If your dog loves making a mess of the house in your absence by destroying and chewing things, then there’s a high chance your dog is suffering from separation anxiety.

A canine who suffers from separation anxiety is more likely to escape from the house to find you. Such dogs can’t tolerate their owner’s absence and will do anything to reunite with you, even if it means running away from home!

Mating Instincts

At the age six to nine months, your puppy will start to into a full-fledged adult who will be able to reproduce. The sexual urge in dogs would drive them to go outside and find themselves a suitable partner.

This urge is stronger in female dogs as compared to males. When the time comes, your dog will give anything to run away from home and reproduce unless he’s been neutered.

Catching Prey

Some dog breeds like Basset hound, Beagle, Vizsla, Labrador, etc., are born to hunt and love chasing some wild animals. Whenever hunting instincts take over, your dog will try to run at some tempting squirrel or rabbit.

dog escaping from car

To See the Outside World

Provided the opportunity, your dog may end up running from home without any second thoughts. Of course, the outside world is much bigger and more interesting than the back yard your furry friend is living at.

So, if your dog finds an open door, he may run away to explore the outside world, but don’t worry, he should eventually come back after having explored the area to his liking!

That’s why it is recommended to take your dog out for a walk … or two on a daily basis so that he can interact with the outside world, which will calm down his urge to go “see the world”.

Why do dogs run away?  Dog breeds that are more likely to do so

There are certain dog breeds that are more likely to run away from homes than others. Here are a few examples:

  • Labrador Retriever
  • Cocker Spaniel
  • German Shepherd
  • Cavalier King Charles Spaniel
  • Yorkshire Terrier
  • Boxer
  • Pug
  • Poodle
  • Chihuahua

So, if your dog belongs to one of these breeds, we highly recommend you read the next section on keeping your dog safe.

dogs escaping through fence

If not … well … you should read it anyway as it doesn’t mean your dog will never be tempted to run away.

So, let’s see how you can keep your furry friend sound and safe.

Why do dogs run away? Prevention tips

Micro-Chip Your Dog

Microchipping your dog is an excellent way of finding your dog, in the event he escapes from the house. Like a GPS it won’t tell you the exact location of your lost dog, but by scanning your dog’s id number with any NFC-based mobile phone, you can quickly locate him.

It’s been said that dogs with microchips are 20 times more likely to be reunited with their owners than those without.

Keep Your Dog Happy and Entertained

Keeping your dog entertained is the first thing you can do to stop your canine friend from running away. If your dog is getting his daily exercise, playtime, walk, interactive puzzle feeders, and cuddle time, then at the end of the day, your dog won’t have the required energy, let alone, desire to wander outside.

You can also devise other interactive ways to keep your dog busy yet happy and entertained. Make sure you are allowing your dog to socialize with other dogs and other people. Doing so, will deplete your dog’s energy and urge to run around.

reasons why dogs like to escape

Have Your Dog Neutered

The only way you can stop your dog’s sexual roaming is by getting him neutered. Besides decreasing the hormonal drive, there are many other benefits to neutering:

  • It makes your dog a lot calmer
  • Neutering protects your dog against certain diseases like prostate and testicular disorders
  • Your dog will get into fewer fights

Foolproof Your Home

To stop your dog from hunting, make sure that the fences are high and strong enough to guard against your dog jumping through or over. From time to time, keep an eye on the door so that someone may not accidentally leave it open.

Before going outside, make sure there is no window opened.

Consult a professional

If your dog suffers from separation anxiety, consult with a behaviorist to get a professional evaluation and determine the best solution to the problem.

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