Dealing with dogs that chew everything

When dogs chew up your favorite and most expensive pair of shoes, or maybe just one, when they start in on the corners of your kitchen cabinets or a piano leg, they kinda loose their cuteness. You start yelling at your roommate or spouse, “Look what your dog did!” This is not a good situation and needs to be corrected immediately.

The little darlings don’t mean to be naughty. They love us unconditionally and we should return that love. But we still must hold fast to our position as the alpha dog. A well trained dog is a happy dog. And the well trained dog makes for a happy owner as well.

Dogs chew for many reasons. They chew when puppies to learn about their surroundings just as tiny tots put everything in their mouths. They chew when teething to sooth their gums. Sometimes they just get bored. And sometimes they chew to soothe their anxieties, such as when left alone for long periods of time. If these behaviors are not corrected early, they may develop into habits.

Since dogs naturally will chew, we need to give them plenty of toys appropriate for chewing. Some types of chew toys dogs love are Nylabones, rawhide chew toys, sturdy rope toys, and toys in which you can insert some peanut butter or cheese.

Dogs also love objects which carry their owner’s scent, such as dirty socks. We are the objects of their affection, after all. So, another tip I learned from a dog trainer long ago was to rotate toys. Put some of them in the dirty clothes hamper long enough to pick up the owner’s scent. After a couple of days getting good and stinky, the toys will be ready to take out for your dog to chew on. Then put the other set of toys in the hamper for a few days. This is strange, but dogs really like it.

Don’t give your dog old slippers, old shoes, old socks, or the like to play with and chew on. Your pet will not be able to discern between that toy and the other things you don’t want him to chew on.

Do not reprimand your dog for chewing on something unless you catch him in the act. If you chastise him a second too late, he will be confused. But if you do catch him red handed, yell a firm NO and distract him to chew on one of his toys. Then lavish praise on him.

If your dog gets separation anxiety, you could leave the television or radio on while you are gone. Some dogs may find this soothing.

You might wish to crate train your dog if you are not going to be gone for too long a time. Dogs actually like the security

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