Chewing is a natural process for dogs. It only becomes a problem when they chew on things that shouldn’t be destroyed or things that could hurt them. Such like shoes, furniture, or dangerous items like electrical cords.
Puppies use chewing to discover objects and understand the world they live. How an item feels, smells, and tastes as they mouth it helps them learn.
As puppies begin getting permanent teeth around five months of age, chewing helps to alleviate the discomfort.
Taking the steps to curb inappropriate chewing is crucial for the safety of your dog and for your household!
Let’s look at some common reasons dogs chew, and steps you can take to correct this problem.
Why a Dog Turns to Destructive Chewing
Chewing could be for these reasons:
Separation anxiety is stressful for a dog. Chewing helps calm your dog when they’re left alone, or when a particular person they are close to is gone.
A hungry dog will chew if you had an unavoidable delay in your regular feeding time. A dog may also chew if they are put on a calorie-restricted diet.
Being Weaned Too Early
There are those who believe that when puppies are weaned too early they will sometimes chew and suck on fabric. A dog may do this to fulfill a natural desire for the comforts of nursing.
Unfortunately, an ordinarily well-behaved dog will chew to avoid boredom when no other forms of distraction are available.
Your dog might chew due to a poor diet that has nutritional deficiencies. Your dog may have a stomach bug that triggers chewing to offset gastrointestinal distress.
A trip to the veterinarian should help you determine if chewing is caused by a medical issue.
Steps to Correct Destructive Chewing
Obedience training, preferably through a professional service, is the foundation your dog needs to learn control over unwelcome behavior.
Next are some steps that could help alleviate your dog’s chewing.
1. Encourage good chewing. Find your dog’s favorite chew toys and always have them on hand. Remove enticing objects like socks, toys, shoes, or pillows.
2. Reprimand bad chewing. Scold your dog when they engage in bad chewing. Remove the inappropriate item and offer a proper chew toy. Praise your pup when they chew on the right toy.
3. Eliminate boredom. Make sure your dog gets plenty of exercise and attention. When your dog is physically and mentally worn out, they’ll be less likely to chew.
4. Consider crating. When you’re not home, crate your dog or place it in a doggy-proof room to keep destruction down.
The Good News
With intervention, your dog will learn what objects are okay to chew on and which are not.
Working to find the right method to stop it from chewing will bring peace to you and your pet!