Date Published: August 1, 2017, Updated: February 23, 2019 at 3:37 pm, Author: Alice
We understand that it can be frustrating to come home to yet another pair of shoes chewed up, or to see the leg of your antique dining table gnawed to the core, but though you may be upset with your dog when she does this, it is not her fault. There is always an underlying cause of destructive chewing behaviors, and if you can identify the source, you can help to eliminate the problem.
If your dog is still a puppy, the cause is likely her age. From exploring the world around her to teething, there are a number of likely reasons that your puppy is destroying your belongings. The good news is that with proper guidance, she will outgrow this stage and learn to leave your shoes alone.
Some dogs go through extreme separation anxiety when their humans aren’t around, prompting them to act out by chewing, barking, whining, urinating and defecating. To help your dog with this problem, take her for a walk before leaving her alone. This will help calm her down and relieve some energy. When you leave, follow the “no touch, no talk, no eye contact rule” – which basically means don’t make a big deal out of your leaving. If you make leaving a normal occurrence, you are communicating to your dog that time apart is not a big deal. Depending on the severity of your puppy’s issue, you may have to practice this rule for anywhere from five minutes up to an hour before leaving.
Another way to help your dog through her anxiety issues is to practice leaving her alone for small periods of time, and then increase your time away as she gets better and better at being by herself.
Many experts believe that if a dog is weaned to early (before 8 weeks), it causes them to lick and suck on fabric, which, of course, leads to chewing. Unfortunately, if this is the case, it is a hard habit to break. If your dog exhibits compulsive sucking behaviors on fabrics, or if it is difficult to distract him from such behaviors, you may need to seek professional intervention from a certified dog trainer who specializes in treating compulsive behavior.
Some dogs just have excess energy, which is perfectly fine, but if this is the case with your pup, you need to help her redirect it elsewhere. Make sure that she gets plenty of exercise and play, and that she is not forced to sit for long periods of time on her own. Remember: dogs are social creatures and are not meant to spend long periods of time indoors and on their own.
If your dog is not getting enough to eat – or if you have put them on a calorie restricted diet – they will attempt to find additional sources of nutrients in anything that lies in their path. While this does not bode well for your shoes or furniture, it is even worse for any objects that smell like food.
While chewing is 100 percent normal for dogs of all ages, when they direct their masticating tendencies towards inappropriate items, it can become a problem. While providing them with a number of chew toys appropriate for their size and age is helpful, it won’t completely nix the problem. To fully eradicate destructive chewing behaviors in your dog, try doing the following:
Additionally, your dog will learn nothing if you spank, scold, or punish her after the fact. In order to understand what she did wrong, she must be able to associate your scolding with her actions.
Dogs are born with an innate desire to gnaw and munch, but it is up to you to redirect her habits so that she is no longer destroying your possessions. By identifying the cause of her habit, giving her the appropriate toys, praising her where necessary, and proving her with support and guidance, you can eliminate destructive chewing habits for good.
At Bully Stick Shoppe, we strive to help dog owners control destructive chewing by providing American made chewing products that are good for your dogs health and that they enjoy gnawing on. To pick out the perfect bully stick for your puppy, visit our shop online.