How to Stop a Dog from Chewing on Things

By Cuteness Contributor

How do you stop a dob from chewing on things? It is normal for dogs to like to chew. But if your dog is becoming destructive around the house, chewing on furniture, carpets or other unacceptable items, you need to do something about it.

No couch eating, please!

The first step is to identify the cause of the behavior.

What is okay and what isn't

If your dog is a puppy, chances are he or she is chewing to relieve the discomfort of losing, cutting or getting used to new teeth. This will pass, but in the meantime you will want to keep him in restricted quarters -- especially when you are not around -- and give him one or two really good chew toys. If the chewing strays to unacceptable items, tell him "no" but end on a positive note by giving him his chew toy and praising him.

Boredom chewing

Another common cause of destruction from constant chewing can simply be boredom. Exercise you dog. Your dog needs to run every day and mental exercise -- like training sessions -- are wonderful ways to wear out your dog by making him THINK! A tired dog is not bored and is not looking for things to do. You can also supply him with challenging toys like those with places to hide toys or food that will keep him busy.

I NEED you!

If you dog needs to be around you all the time and becomes destructive right after you leave him or her, your dog may be suffering from separation anxiety. You will need to work with your dog slowly, step by step to build his confidence for when you are away from him. Identify the things you habitually do before leaving, like grabbing your keys. Repeat them over and over without leaving so these actions will not longer worry your pup. Leave him alone for short periods of time and lengthen them little by little. If your dog has separation anxiety and is always hanging around close to you, you need to build his self-assurance so keep him off the bed, off your lap and occasionally in another room. As he builds confidence, he will be less anxious when you are gone, and less destructive.

Another way to deal with chewing is to crate train your dog. Most come to love their crates and you know you can leave your pup for reasonable periods of time without worrying.

This is just a quick rundown on the most common destructive chewing issues and some tips on how to stop your dog from chewing on things. You can find a lot more information in behavioral dog training books and articles, on the Internet and by calling in a good behavioral dog trainer. For more information, check the additional Resources below.