Sometimes the joys of having a companion pooch are overshadowed by destructive behaviors. Dogs chew for a variety of reasons; puppies chew to explore the world and teethe, adult dogs may chew because they're bored, don't have the right toys or are suffering from separation anxiety.
Tip #1 - Reprimand your pooch when he's caught in the act with a firm "No!" or "Drop!" The firmness in your voice should be enough to startle your pup and to let her know that what she's doing isn't acceptable. However, you should never yell or scream. Also, never discipline your pup if you find the gnawed baseboard after he's chewed it -- he won't understand what you're mad about because dogs will associate the discipline with what they're doing at the moment, not what they did before.
Tip #2 - Give your pup a solid, durable chew toy. This is particularly helpful for puppies who are teething or for adult dogs who are just exercising their natural instinct to chew and work their teeth and jaws. If you catch your pooch in the act of baseboard gnawing, give her the chew toy after you give the "No!" or "Drop!" command.
Tip #3 - Crate train your furry companion. If done correctly, crate training is an effective method for many behaviors and it also gives your pup his own safe place or den. Crate training is ideal if your pooch is chewing the baseboards while you're away for short periods of time, but not all day. Do proper research in order to employ humane crate training methods.
Tip #4 - Spend some quality time with your dog. Some dogs will chew out of boredom, so he may not be getting enough one-on-one time with you. Increase the length of your walks or set aside a time every day for some rough-and-tumble play time.
Tip #5 - Spray the baseboards with a taste repellent. Some common repellents have a bitter apple taste or are made with hot peppers. You can find these almost anywhere, including big box stores and your favorite pet supply store.
By Jasey Kelly
About the Author
With a professional background in gardening, landscapes, pests and natural ecosystems, Jasey Kelly has been sharing her knowledge through writing since 2009 and has served as an expert writer in these fields. Kelly's background also includes childcare, and animal rescue and care.