If there’s one thing that can send one’s blood pressure skyrocketing, it’s finding a pair of shoes chewed to oblivion by your puppy. Make that designer shoes, and you may even faint. To get to the bottom of this, you need to train your puppy not to chew on household goods and to only chew on toys you provide it.
Puppies usually indulge in chewing because they are teething and feel discomfort in their gums. They especially like chewing on your belongings because these belonging have your scent on them, which is comforting in its own way. However, it’s not that difficult to train your puppy to chew on toys instead of your things.
Training Your Puppy To Stop Chewing
First of all, it’s best to keep your belongings out of the reach of your puppy when you are not around to observe it. This can prevent you from losing any of your beloved belongings to your puppy’s chewing. As for your furniture, you can coat the areas of the furniture that your puppy likes to bite on (sofa legs, shelf edges) with cayenne pepper or any other non-toxic, bad-tasting substance to deter your puppy from chewing them.
When you are around, catch your puppy in the act when it chews. Say a very firm “No!” and remove the object being chewed from its mouth, replacing it with a chew toy. When your dog starts chewing on the toy, praise him lavishly. One thing you should remember is to never scold your puppy for chewing after the puppy has stopped the act. Your puppy will not understand that you are upset at it for chewing your belongings. Only correct your puppy while it is chewing, never after.
Also, you can put a wet washcloth in the freezer and give this to your puppy to chew on. It will soothe the discomfort your puppy feels because of the teething process. When you puppy chews on this washcloth, it may help to praise him. Of course, you should use the same washcloth all the time for this purpose.
Other Things To Note To Prevent Your Puppy From Chewing
While your puppy is still being trained to stop chewing, it is advisable to put it in a crate or in an empty room with enough food, water and chew toys when you are away from home, or when there is no one to watch over your puppy. This way you can prevent any unwanted chewing when you are not around.
Do not give your puppy anything that similar to something you wouldn’t want chewed on, for example an old shoe. Your puppy won’t be able to tell the difference between the old shoe and your new sneakers. It will also get confused as to why you get upset when it chewed on your shoes and not when it chews on the old shoe you gave him. Stick to chew toys.
If your puppy does not seem interested in chewing on toys, try putting the toys in your laundry hamper for a few hours before giving it to your puppy. Sometimes it’s just that your puppy likes your scent. Stuffing some treats into the toys may help too.
Using the tips above, hopefully you can stop your puppy from chewing what it shouldn’t. Good luck!
By Phinehas Chelan
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