3 Ways to Correct Destructive Dog Chewing
2 February, 2018
Contribution from freelance writer Jocelyn Brown
Chewing is a common activity for dogs—we all know this, and it is nothing to worry about. But sometimes, dogs start to exhibit other strange behaviors, like chewing their paws excessively or chewing other things to the point of destruction. While some chewing is permissible, destructive chewing is not, and you should be aware of the difference.
If your dog is destructively chewing furniture, shoes, or other items in your home, you may have a problem on your hands—especially if your dog is no longer a puppy. Generally speaking, a dog’s deciduous teeth (puppy teeth) should be replaced with permanent teeth when they are four to six months of age, meaning the chewing should gradually stop. For owners hoping to put an end to your dog’s inappropriate, destructive chewing, here are three ways to correct your dog’s chewing habit:
1. Rule out medical issues
Before trying anything else, you should take the proper steps to rule out any serious medical concerns that your dog may have. In some cases, nutritional deficiencies that are a result of intestinal issues or a poor diet can lead to inappropriate chewing. Also, any gastrointestinal problems are liable to cause nausea. which may also trigger chewing as a method to cope. Making a quick appointment with your veterinarian to rule out any underlying medical issues that may be causing the chewing will be extremely helpful in the long term.
2. Encourage proper chewing
What’s the alternative to destructive chewing? Teaching your dog how to properly chew. Providing your dog with appropriate chew toys that are healthy for their teeth and can even combat dental diseases will be constructive in teaching your dog to be less destructive. If your dog has designated toys for chewing, he or she will be less likely to chew on random household items and furniture. Try not to provide to toys that resemble inappropriate items, so your dog doesn’t get confused and learns to differentiate between what is okay to chew and what is not.
3. Make time for play
Since destructive chewing is usually a consequence of your dog feeling overly energetic, stressed, or anxious, it is crucial to engage in playtime during the day. Most owners know that your dog will not settle down if you do not exercise with him/her each day. Since a tired dog is a well-behaved dog, you should always make time to play with your dog to expel his/her energy. This way, your dog won’t have to expend all its energy inside the house by destructively chewing things that it shouldn’t.
By ruling out medical issues, encouraging proper chewing, and making time for play, dog owners can teach their dog constructive behaviors that will lead them away from inappropriate, destructive chewing.
Jocelyn Brown is a professional freelancer writer and mother. She loves the freedom that comes with freelancing and the versatility it allows her in covering many different topics and themes. When not at work she enjoys running, hikes in the country and making the most of family time
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