Destructive Chewing

Pupkus Training Guides

Topic: Destructive Chewing

Chewing is possibly the second most common behavioural problem to be exhibited by your growing puppy. Chewing is normal puppy behaviour from which puppies learn valuable skills at the same time as exercising its jaw and assisting in the teething process. It also plays an important part of your dog's communication and socialisation with its piers. If you ever watch puppies play, the majority of their interaction is chase and chew. 

When we take on the role of caring for a puppy we also take on the role of being their pier, except we don't have the fur to protect us from those sharp little teeth. We need to redirect the biting puppy on to an object that won't feel the pain of their teeth such as a pull rope, squeaky toy etc. The best way to do this is to rapidly move the object to stimulate your puppy to play with it. Once it has responded, praise your puppy.

The same method can be used distract your puppy from chewing such things as the couch, clothing and favourite shoes just to name a few. If you catch your puppy in the act you can punished him by removing his mouth from the article while saying "No" sternly and then give him his own toy to chew on. If you come across a chewed article but no puppy in sight, then you can not punish your puppy. The act has already been committed and your puppy has already moved on, you will just have to wait until you can catch it in the act next time.

If you are unable to watch your puppy or fully remove things that your puppy can chew on, then you can use liquids that can be painted on things, such as bitterbite, dencorub and tobasco sauce that will deter your puppy the moment it takes the first bite.

A bored puppy is a destructive puppy and if given the opportunity it will create a lot of damage. It is up to you to provide your puppy with interactive toys that will help ease boredom and aid in teething. Rawhide or marrowbones can also be given to your puppy and they will provide hours of fun for your puppy and peace and quiet for you.

Remember that a puppy is much like a toddler and requires the removal of items that it will inevitably chew. Get down to your puppy's eye level and see what interesting things they can see that they might like to chew. If you think like them and remove the items of interest you may be able to live through puppy-hood without getting chew marks in too many things.