S.O.S. (Save Our Stuff!)
Having a dog with a tendency to chew on things that it isn’t supposed to can be one of the most frustrating situations to be in.
On one hand, you love your puppy and he or she brings a ton of joy to your life. On the other hand, you would do just about ANYTHING to stop dog chewing!
What’s a good dog owner to do?
If you’re trying to stop dog chewing, one thing NOT to do is to get overly upset and worked up. Dogs can sense energy, and if you get stressed because your puppy chewed a pair of your favorite shoes, your animal will feed off of your anxiety, which could cause the chewing situation to become worse. Instead, take a firm (but kind!) approach to your dogs chewing habits. Your pup will appreciate that you are “being the pack leader” and giving direction on what to do and what not to do.
One great way to stop dog chewing is to replace bad-to-chew item with items that are okay for your pup to chew on. If you see your dog with something like a shoe, a child’s toy, or other item that doesn’t belong to him, you must act quickly. First, tell him “No.” in a very firm (but not yelling) voice. Take the item away from him and repeat the word “No.” Then, once he has calmed down, show him a bone, piece of rawhide, or one of his toys. Make him sit down, and once he is calm, let him take it from you in a gentle manner. As he begins to chew what you gave him, praise him. This will help him to understand that he is only to chew items that you give to him, things that belong to him, and that he can even be rewarded for doing so!
Another way to stop dog chewing is to use a chemical chewing deterrent. If you see that your dog has a particular item or place that he likes to chew on, this deterrent spray will help keep him away. Sold in pet stores, online, and in most grocery stores, the deterrent is a bitter tasting spray (sometimes flavored like a bitter apple) that will make an item unappealing to your dog.
If you want to stop dog chewing once and for all, contact a local dog trainer. They will be in the best position to determine the root of your dog’s chewing and help you understand how to stop the behavior for good. This will definitely help both you and Fido live happier, healthier lives.