How to stop a dog from chewing

You come home and see a very tragic picture: your flat looks like a battlefield where your dog is the ultimate winner sitting on top of the enemies — gnawed things. So why does your dog chew your things and how to stop your dog from chewing everything they see?

How to stop your puppy from chewing?

Puppies explore the world using their teeth and no wonder that everything around falls under their thorough examination. Puppies are completely unaware that some things are absolutely inappropriate for their teeth. 

Besides, teething, just like it is with kids, means a lot of discomfort for the puppy. That’s the time when young dogs put everything they see into their mouths. 

The best you can do is to take all the loved things away when the puppy is left unattended.

But when you are at home and you can watch the pet, use the “Rope” method introduced by leading canine specialists. Tie a rope to the puppy’s collar or harness and make sure it drags freely behind the pup (also make sure that the rope is untied when you leave the house). 

If the puppy grabs something which you don’t want him to grab, say “Stop!” Come closer to the pup, step on the end of the rope and gently (very, very gently) pull the puppy, take an object and repeat “Stop!” You should only hold an object, never pull it out of the puppy’s mouth. Sooner or later the puppy will spit it out. Praise the puppy but continue to hold to the “bone of contention” in front of him. If the pet tries to grab a forbidden item again, say “Stop!” Repeat this until the puppy loses interest and turns their head from the object. If the puppy tries to get the object again (be sure, they will try it), repeat it once again.

This method won’t make the puppy scared of their owner as there is no hitting and screaming, but it will make the pup understand that there are some prohibitions which are never changed. It will take time for the puppy to learn these, so be patient.

Of course, to switch your puppy’s attention from forbidden objects, make sure your pup has enough toys, including chew toys. It is recommended to change the toys (that is, hide those toys used yesterday, and offer a couple of “new” ones — for example, those played the day before yesterday) to ensure that the puppy is not bored with them. 

How to stop an adult dog from chewing?

To stop an adult dog from chewing things, it is important to understand why they do so and work directly with the cause. If the dog doesn’t just chew inedible objects but also swallows them, consult a veterinarian as soon as possible — this can be one of the symptoms of gastrointestinal diseases.

Another reason why dogs chew things is stress. Chewing calms the dog and therefore relieves their psychological state. If you punish a pet for this behavior, it causes even more distress (“bad” stress), which makes the problem worse and this all ends up in a vicious circle.

One more possible reason is boredom. The dogs get extremely bored if they are left at home for a long time and have a lack of physical activity. 

So, how to stop a dog from chewing everything they see? First of all, it is necessary to work with the reason and not with the symptom. Only this can make success possible. 

It is necessary to analyze whether all 5 dog freedoms are observed and if not, do everything possible to provide your four-legged friend with acceptable living conditions.

If you cannot solve the problem yourself, consult a canine specialist as soon as possible. 

August 20, 2020

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