Chewing furniture or other objects may seem quite natural for dogs if they are little and in the process of teething. However, correcting the chewing habit is essential from the very beginning to avoid further complications and an apartment damages, as well as health problems for pets. Before correcting the habit one should know whether the chewing is natural, due to teething, or it is because of some illnesses. An emotional condition in dogs is very often the reason of inappropriate chewing. Using professional recommendations help to correct your pets on time.
An instinct to explore the world is a natural, common characteristic for almost all the creatures on our planet. However, apart from being interesting and entertaining the process can sometimes be quite risky and uncomfortable for others.
Those who keep pets mostly adore them, take them as their family members, but there is one “small problem” which may cause defects to people’s properties and consequently touch their nerves.
Why do dogs chew?
If you find out your favorite furniture chewed, torn apart or in unpleasant condition, it means your puppy is trying to explore the world with the help of his mouth and at the same time trying hard to feel relief from teething.
One of the key reasons of an inappropriate chewing is teething.
A dog’s deciduous teeth erupt between three to eight weeks of age, and around four to six months of age these teeth are step by step replaced with permanent ones. Teething is not an easy process. It is related to pain and through chewing dogs try to feel relief.
Chewing can indicate on an illness or hunger
The reason of chewing can also be medical, referring to nutritional deficiencies or gastrointestinal complications. If a dog continues chewing when his teeth are all in place this may indicate some internal problems. Dogs chew when they are hungry or on a diet. In such a situation they mainly chew such things which resemble food or smell like something eatable.
Can emotions cause chewing in dogs?
Boredom can be a reason for inappropriate chewing, as having no fun encourages a dog do mischievous things. Specialists also name separation anxiety as a possible reason for chewing.
Some dogs feel distressed when they find out themselves alone, feel bored and spoil things “to fill the gap” appeared during the absence of their favorite humans. Chewing fabric can also have an emotional background and as experts say having been weaned too early before a pet reaches seven or eight weeks of age, can be the cause.
Forgiveness equals problems
Despite the fact to “forgive is divine” the dog’s chewing habit can provoke a range of challenges at homes, and many try their utmost to keep their beloved domestic animals from spoiling their belongings.
If not corrected dogs may continue chewing after their teething ends that will cause negatives both for patrons, who will see the damage of their properties, and animals, as the long-lasting chewing can affect dogs’ bones and cause health problems.
If a dog is healthy and does not require treatment, or he was already treated, correcting a habit, even in the teething process which seems natural enough is essential to prevent future complications.
Ways to stop destructive chewing
To specify whether the reason of chewing is natural, i.e., it is an instinct, or this is provoked by an illness paying a visit to a veterinarian is a good solution before taking the following steps to correct the pet.
- The first thing one can do for this is avoiding dangerous objects, those which can affect the animal, and the items which can cause curiosity in a dog from the area where the pet spends his time.
- Considering crate training the dog for the times when he is alone can also be an outcome in some situations. Before that, try to choose comfortable crate.
- Encouraging appropriate chewing is one of the best ways to keep a dog from chewing furniture and other objects.
- Supporting the “safe form of chewing” means proving a dog with other, safe items he can chew, but the items must not be swallowed easily as such things like chicken bones, beef bone and similar could create threats to the dog’s life.
Scold early, never later
If you see that your dog addresses inappropriate chewing anyway, you must discourage this, take the thing out of him, or scold him for this, but you must do it in the process when your dog spoils something.
If you scold him a bit later, it means you just lose time as your pet will “never guess” why you are angry.
When being scolded even after passing some time from damaging something a dog has an expression as if he regrets and many think he guessed that he was wrong. However, he is threatened that time and not “ashamed.”
Spend more time, leave smaller room for boredom & anxiety
One of the ways to correct inappropriate chewing is to spend much time with a dog, have a walk with him, play with him, have fun with him, as a tired dog is the best dog ever!. And there is no time for boredom.
When it comes to separation anxiety, specialists provide several tips. The tips include taking a dog for a walk before leaving, no touch or eye contact before leaving as this may trigger the feeling of separation. Being calm and assertive before leaving also helps.
To ease the separation anxiety, specialists also recommend to get a dog accustomed to being alone initially for five minutes, then for ten minutes and more and more gradually.
It may be a bit surprising but switching on audiobooks, TV or a radio set for dogs before leaving is also considered as one of the ways to ease separation for dogs and prevent inappropriate chewing.