Many pet parents are not prepared for the constant chewing that comes with a new pup. Whether you’ve adopted a new member for your pet family or there’s a newborn, chewing can often be an issue.
While it may be cute at first, it can be quite a nuisance if your pup chews away your favorite pair of shoes or an important document that had to be submitted that day.
It might be challenging to deal with the problem initially, but once you make some fundamental changes, this habit will go away.
Besides being harmful to your household items, chewing can also jeopardize your pet’s health. Therefore, you shouldn’t ignore this habit. Below, we discuss how to stop a dog from chewing everything and healthy habits that you can promote in your pup.
Understand the Problem
First off, you need to learn some things about your dog. Just like human toddlers and infants, pups are also attracted to everything new. Moreover, they teethe for up to six months. During this time, they experience discomfort in their gums.
Along with helping the process of teething, chewing also eases this pain. On the other hand, adult dogs might be chewing for different reasons. Before you try to solve the problem, you must know why your dog is chewing in the first place.
Some common causes are:
- Separation anxiety
- Fear-related behavior
- Lack of knowledge about what or what not to chew
Moreover, your dog might chew to get your attention. If that’s the case, you can solve the chewing issue by spending quality time with them.
Teach Your Dog What to Chew
Once you notice that your dog is chewing excessively, you need to start taking steps to tackle the issue. Here’s what you can do.
Keep Your Belongings Hidden
If you don’t want your dog to chew on your stuff, the best thing to do is keep the things away. Keep your important files and papers at a height so that your pup can’t reach them.
Also, make sure that your clothes, shoes, and glasses are away from your pet’s reach.
Choose The Toys Accordingly
Don’t buy toys for your dog that look like your household belongings. Instead, purchase toys that are distinguishable from other items in your house.
If your dog plays with toys that look like shoes and books, they’re likely to chew on real shoes, confusing them with toys.
Plus, only choose high-quality toys. For instance, some plush toys have detachable pieces that could pose a choking hazard to your pet. Avoid bringing such toys for your dogs.
Instead, you can opt for nylon bones as they’re non-damaging and durable. Moreover, dogs tend to love them.
It’s also important to select age-appropriate toys for your dogs, especially if they’re passionate chewers. If a toy has started to fall apart, replace it immediately. Otherwise, it may slowly become small enough for your dog to swallow and choke.
Pay Attention to Your Pup
Just as you have to look after your baby, you must keep an eye on your dog too. Make sure that they’re not near anything that they shouldn’t be close to.
Being young, pups will have an urge to put everything new in their mouth. So, you should pay attention to them when you’re around.
Also, don’t let your dog go into the bathroom because that’s where many dangerous things are present. Besides shampoos and other formulations, the bathroom also has different objects that your dog can chew on.
Always supervise your dog in the bathroom.
If you have jewelry or any expensive decor item out in the open, keep it away until your dog has learned to stop chewing.
Make Sure They’re Around Your Scent
As discussed, some puppies chew because of separation anxiety. Therefore, if you’re leaving your pup for long durations, make sure you leave your scent behind.
You can do that by rubbing your dog’s favorite toy on your body and touching their bowl with your hands. If you’re leaving traces of your scent behind, your dog will not be anxious in your absence.
However, without your scent in the house, your dog will be more prone to destructive behavior, such as whining, chewing, and barking.
Some pet parents also report that leaving a radio turned on with soothing music also helps keep the pets calm when they’re gone.
Notice the things that your dog loves to chew. Spray taste-deterrents, like Bitter Apple, to keep your pets away from those items.
Your dog won’t miraculously know that he’s not supposed to chew on something. You have to train him.
Start by giving your dogs alternatives. When you see them chewing, offer a dog treat or soft chew as a substitute.
You can also command them with words like ‘Give’ or ‘Leave’ as a cue to let go of the object they’re chewing to get a yummy treat instead.
However, don’t chase them as dogs tend to make a game out of their human parents running after them. Instead, interrupt them and then divert their attention from the inappropriate chewing object.
How to Stop a Teething Dog From Chewing?
If your dog is teething, chewing is inevitable. However, you can reduce this by putting a cold cloth on their gums. Wet a washcloth and let it freeze for a while. Then, use this cloth to soothe your pup’s teething gums.
Also, always look after your dog when they’re using this cloth to prevent swallowing.
Alternatively, you can ask your vet about possible interventions to help reduce gnawing and chewing in your teething puppy.
Even with all these methods, you need to have realistic expectations from your pup. At some point, they’re going to chew, and you can’t prevent it entirely.
However, you can reduce the instances by training your dog to chew on other things or keep the chewable items away or unappealing for them.