Have you just lost another shoe to your Cockerpoo? Or is your kitchen table suddenly looking a lot more “rustic” than you remember? If so then do not despair, here are some tips on changing your dog’s destructive behaviour into something that you are both happy with.
Chewing is a natural doggie behaviour; your dog isn’t misbehaving or criticising your taste in shoes! He needs an outlet so provide him with lots of things he’s allowed to gnaw on. When I say lots, I mean if you aren’t tripping over them you may not have enough!
Make sure your dog gets plenty of exercise. A bored dog is more likely to chew excessively to alleviate the boredom and burn off energy.
Change up your dog’s chew toys on a regular basis so he doesn’t get bored and look for something more interesting
Try splitting your dog’s meals into small portions and feeding them in kongs throughout the day. It will keep your dog busy and give him a good outlet for his chewing.
When the weather is warm you can freeze food in kongs for your dog, not only will it last longer but it will also help to cool them down.
If you catch your dog chewing something inappropriate give him something he is allowed to chew. Don’t scold or shout as this will not teach him to stop chewing, he will only learn not to do it in front of you and nobody wants a hole in the back of the sofa!
When you are at home use pet gates to keep your dog with you and pay attention to him, he can’t sneak away to chew when he’s with you and if he does start chewing the wrong thing you can quickly substitute something else
If you do come home to chewy carnage don’t get cross, just take a deep breath, pop your dog in another room/crate/garden and clear up the mess. Shouting will only scare your dog, he will have no idea what’s going on and it won’t help anything.
Set your dog up to succeed. Don’t leave things where your dog can get them. Put your shoes away, don’t leave your dog around furniture he’s likely to chew. Crate training is very useful here.
Lastly and most importantly when your dog is chewing something they are supposed to, you are happy about it, right? Show him! Make a fuss, praise, praise, praise! If you do this regularly enough you should ensure the future safety of your possessions!
Let me know how you get on,
Branch Manager, Reading West and Qualified Dog Trainer