Losing a dog is one of the many heartbreaking things of life, so when a dog runs away it’s no wonder we think the worst! In reality 95% of dogs who run away either come home or are reunited with their families.
What makes a dog more likely to run away? Do some breeds run away more than others? In this article, we will go over some of the different breeds and how likely they are to run away, why dogs run away and how to prevent your dog from running away.
In addition, we will answer some frequently asked questions!
Table of Contents
- What Breed of Dog Is Least Likely to Run Away?
- What Breed of Dog Is Most Likely to Run Away?
- Why Do Dogs Run Away?
- How To Stop My Dog Running Away?
- Can Dogs Find Their Way Home?
- How Far Can Dogs Run Away From Home?
- How Do I Find A Lost Dog?
- What Do Dogs Do When They Get Lost?
- Why Do Dogs Run Away When They Are Dying?
- What Should I Do If I Find A Lost Dog?
What Breed of Dog Is Least Likely to Run Away?
The top breeds least likely to run away include:
- Golden Retriever
- German Shepherd
Dogs that are least likely to run away are usually individuals that are more relaxed, loyal, confident and easy going. These types of dogs have little motivation to leave home for any reason and aren’t likely to be frightened away from home.
They may more comfortable at home than they are motivated to roam.
What Breed of Dog Is Most Likely to Run Away?
Some of the breeds who have the worst reputation for running away include:
Dogs prone to running away are either energetic breeds that need lots of stimulation or small nervous breeds that are easily spooked. Both these traits can cause them to wander away from home and get themselves turned around and end up lost.
Why Do Dogs Run Away?
Dogs run away for a wide range of reasons.
- Looking for an adventure – species just love to explore and will take any opportunity to do so! Huskies are notorious for this behaviour but sporting breeds are also prone to adventuring.
- Understimulated – lack of mental and physical stimulation may entice a dog to try to escape to burn off some energy and look for some human connection.
- Looking to breed – unneutered males can smell a female in season from miles away. If they get a whiff they will try anything to get to her and forget all about home in attempts to breed.
- Fear – if your dogs are scared or frightened by something at home they can run away to escape it. This can be other dogs/animals or humans that it doesn’t like
- Instinct – hunting dogs such as terriers follow their instincts to chase small animals and when they find a scent to follow it can cause them to run away from home to follow it.
How To Stop My Dog Running Away?
Dogs run away from home for a reason, not to just be mischievous! So to stop them from running away from home you need to make sure they have no reason to go elsewhere. Do these things to keep your dog from running away from home:
- neuter your dog
- exercise regular
- obedience training
- keep them inside
- secure the yard with a fence
- keep them entertained
Can Dogs Find Their Way Home?
Yes, dogs can find their way home! The rate of a dog returning home 24 hours after running away is 90% and drops down to 60% as time goes on.
Dogs who run away from home usually have every intend to return but often times get lost.
A dog who is wandered away from home can find it’s way home by scent, using their visual memory and retracing its steps.
How Far Can Dogs Run Away From Home?
Most dogs are recovered within a 2 mile radius of their homes. This is usually limited by just how far their legs can take them so small dogs are less likely to go as far as large dogs.
There have been reports of dogs walking over 10 miles to return to their old homes when recently adopted out.
Lost dogs will continue to roam until they find something familiar to help them find their way home or until a human picks them up and surrenders then to a shelter.
How Do I Find A Lost Dog?
Your first action should be to drive around your neighbourhood calling out to your dog. Many times a lost dog has not gone very far.
Speak to your neighbours to look around their yards as scared lost dogs can hide in shed, garages or under houses. Make sure someone stays home that if your dog returns they can secure it, otherwise it may come home and leave again looking for you!
Put out food and your dogs favourite treats and blankets to lure them home if they are nearby.
Contact your local vets and animal shelters to see if your dog has been picked up. Post on local social media pages such as facebook, you never know who has spotted your dog!
What Do Dogs Do When They Get Lost?
Even dogs that are usually confident and relaxed can become afraid when they realize they are lost. They are likely to become hungry, cold and scared and become quite anxious to get home.
The first thing they will do is try to find their way home. They will search for familiar scents and places to help orientate themselves towards home.
Some friendly dogs will find any old human to wander up to when they are lost, knowing that humans are friendly to them. Often times they will get picked up and taken to a shelter.
Dogs that are scared may avoid strange people and find a place to hide and sleep for the night. Under houses or in the forest your dog might find shelter. Dogs will continue to wander trying to survive until they find their way home or get found.
Why Do Dogs Run Away When They Are Dying?
Dogs that are ill and dying often run away as their bodies tell them that being ill and injured puts them in a vulnerable position. They hide themselves away to try to protect themselves when suffering.
What Should I Do If I Find A Lost Dog?
Contact a local animal rescue or shelter to surrender the dog and the owners should make contact to reunite themselves with their dog.
You can also keep it at home with you if you have the ability to do so. Make sure you do a awesome job at looking for the owner by posting fliers and leaving messages all over social media.