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Why does my dog chew everything, even the wall?

asked 2015-11-16 12:47:56 -0600

I'm having a lot of trouble with our puppy who is chewing on everything. I puppy proofed our house and bought a lot of chew toys and she simply won't stop getting into things. What are your tips for dealing with a power chewer?

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John M.'s profile image John M.  ( 2017-01-15 05:02:30 -0600 ) edit

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answered 2015-11-16 15:21:14 -0600

I don't have much puppy experience, compared to some sitters that specialize, but here are a couple good links: https://www.aspca.org/pet-care/dog-ca... http://pets.webmd.com/dogs/guide/dest... Good luck.

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answered 2015-11-16 16:47:09 -0600

My biggest interventions are always, in order, exercise and entertainment. Dogs with lots of pent up energy and boredom (especially highly intelligent dogs who need some extra mental challenge) can develop some very bad habits quite easily. Try taking your dog for a long, structured walk or hike, or train your dog to walk on a treadmill with you (this isn't for everybody or every dog). Do lots of active play time (fetch, stick, chase, tug, etc) if that's not enough or if you're restricted by your time or energy level. One thing I have found very helpful for our puppy is toy rotation. If you have lots of toys, give your pup a few to play with and put the rest away for awhile. You can vary how often you switch the toys out depending on how long it takes your pup to get bored with them. You could do every day, every few days, or every week or two weeks. You can also make DIY interactive dog toys or buy some wherein your dog can paw or nose at puzzle-type toys to get treats and such. There are also toys that you can fill with treats or dry dog food so your dog has to work for their meal. Our pup loves hunting for treats under a Frisbee when we put them on the ground. I usually combine these with specific training if I think it's a more pervasive habit. Look into training for destructive chewing. My approach would be to call the pup away from the wall with kissing noises and happy calling, anything to get their attention in a positive way, then offer a treat when they left the wall (aka reward for stopping the destructive habit). Hope these help!

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answered 2015-11-16 16:47:24 -0600

Provide your pup with lots of good items to chew and reward her for choosing appropriate items. Intervene when she attempts to chew something off limits. Make sure she's supervised or safely contained at all times so she doesn't have the opportunity to chew on something inappropriate. Since chewing releases endorphins, it's a self-rewarding behavior, so you have to actively teach your dog what you want them to chew and what you don't. gates or shut doors can help keep your puppy contained in whatever area of the house you're in; tethering to your waistband is also a great way to monitor your puppy when you're too busy to give her your full attention in a larger space. Kennel training will also keep her and your house safe when you're out or distracted.

This video has a great description of crate training, and while the specific context is for potty training, everything applies just as much for chewing - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FG-gy...

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