Inappropriate or destructive chewing in both young and adult dogs often leads to extensive destruction of personal property when not corrected.
Destructive chewing can also erode the strong bond you share with your dog over time.
It’s your responsibility as a dog owner to correct this behaviour while your pet is still young so that it doesn’t become a long-standing problem even in adulthood.
So, what exactly causes destructive chewing in dogs, and how can you stop this undesirable behaviour? Continue reading to learn more:
Causes of Destructive Chewing
Chewing different objects is normal behaviour in young dogs. Like babies, puppies love to use their mouths and teeth to explore the world around them.
It’s also their way of coping with the discomfort of teething. So, if your puppy isn’t destroying things, there’s nothing to worry about because it’s a stage he’ll outgrow after a while.
However, if your canine companion is chewing your documents, clothes, books, shoes, or furniture, it’s time to take action.
Consider puppy-proofing your home while you work on discouraging him from inappropriate chewing in the long term.
For a start, look around for possible dangers in your home and keep them away from your pet. This can be anything from chemicals and household cleaners to toxic plants and electrical cords.
Secondly, invest in baby locks to lock your cabinets and baby gates to limit access to rooms in your home you consider unsafe. This will go a long way in preventing your dog from opening them.
You should also remove socks, ties, shoes, books, and any other item that your pet may find appealing so he doesn’t chew and destroy them.
Anti Chew Spray For Puppies & Dogs.
Busy Buddy Squirrel Dude, Interactive Treat Dispensing Dog Toy – Chew Toy, Small Dogs.
Underlying Medical Problems
Your dog’s destructive chewing can also be caused by underlying medical issues. For instance, nutritional deficiencies caused by intestinal parasitism or poor diet can result in pica – an instinct that causes dogs to consume non-food items.
In addition, if your pet is suffering from gastrointestinal problems, he may experience nausea, and as a result, he may resort to chewing things as a way of coping with the situation.
Therefore, it’s advisable to take your dog to the vet immediately if he has started chewing your stuff all of a sudden. This will help to rule out medical issues.
Boredom and Loneliness
A bored and lonely dog will find different ways to entertain himself. This can be by barking at everyone and everything he sees, digging your garden (probably to escape), or chewing your precious personal items.
So, if your dog has suddenly started chewing destructively, it could be because of boredom and loneliness.
Ask yourself if you’re spending enough time playing with your dog and providing him with enough physical and mental exercises daily. If not, your pet must have excess energy that he needs to spend.
The solution here is to give him sufficient physical and mental exercises that will leave him too tired to chew your personal items.
Also, make sure you create time to play with your dog daily. Playing allows you to spend quality time together and strengthen the bond you share with him.
Though chewing is common in puppies, some dogs continue chewing even in adulthood. This is usually because of instinct.
If your personal properties are being destroyed, you don’t have to put up with the bad behaviour. Instead, you should take away whatever your dog is chewing and correct him right away in a gentle and calm tone.
Thereafter, redirect his chewing instinct to the right objects, like chew toys. Encourage him to chew his toys every day, and praise him every time he does so. He’ll learn which objects he is and isn’t allowed to chew with time.
All in all, when you understand the different causes of destructive chewing in dogs, you’ll be better prepared to help your canine companion stop his bad behaviour.
Love dogs? Why not start your own dog bakery and work from home?