How to prevent a dog from chewing
If you feel you might have an issue with your dog chewing then firstly it is important to discover why your dog is chewing. Dogs chew for many reasons, one of which being a mental problem called Pica. Pica is a condition where dogs crave things to eat that is not food. If you feel this could be the reason for your dogs chewing then you must take your dog to see a vet.However if your dog is healthy, has no health issues and you do not believe Pica to be the reason behind then you must find out why your dog chews and how to prevent it.
Teething is a major reason for dogs chewing. Just like babies, when dogs are teething their mouths are sore and they will want to chew anything to soothe this pain however you can help train your puppy by teaching them what items they can chew and what items they cant. Whilst teething, always provide them with teething chew toys, this will help them establish that they can chew those toys but not anything else. If they are chewing anything they shouldn’t be, take it off them and give them a toy; over time they will learn which toys are right to chew and what items are off limits. You can also buy teething gel to use on chew toys and on their gums to help soothe the pain making them less likely to want to chew.
Some dogs will chew out of boredom or to gain attention. Dogs need to be stimulated on a daily basis to keep them occupied. Playing games with them or taking them out on regular walks will help do this and can decrease the chance of any chewing occurring. There will always be times when you are not at home however providing walks before hand and leaving them with toys will help. If you feel they cannot be trusted then crate train them and leave them in a crate whilst you are out therefore they cannot bite anything so will not misbehavior whilst you are not home and you can concentrate on good behaviour when you are home.
Ensure when training your dog you are consistent, start from the moment you get up to the moment to go to bed each and every night. Keep your commands the same at all time and make sure the whole family uses them. Choose simple words like no or stop if they are misbehaving however never scold your dog as you want them to learn not to be frightened by you. When your dog is behaving be sure to praise them with affection and/or treats. This way your dog will quickly learn which behaviour they get rewarded for and which behaviour they don’t. There are several products on the market at the moment to help train your dog not to chew. Any local pet store will provide products to assist your training such as bitter apple spray however the hard work must come from you training them.
If you require more information or advice feel free to contact us.