Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Why Dogs Love to Chew

Dogs love to chew. Have you ever wondered why dogs chew on things? Even better, why do they chew on EXPENSIVE things of yours?

Dogs chew on things for several reasons.

Here they are:

1. Learning. Puppies and young dogs learn about their environment by mouthing and gnawing on objects. Typically the targets are random, and may include shoes, books or bedposts. Investigational or "play-related" destructiveness of this kind is a normal behavior for a growing dog and the number one reason for destructive chewing behavior.

2. Boredom and stress. This is the next most common reasons dogs chew. Some adult dogs chew out of boredom or because they are upset when they are "abandoned" by their owners each morning. In the dog's frenzied efforts to escape the house or find his owner, a dog of this persuasion will dig and chew at doorways, windowsills and curtains. He may also search for shoes, pillows, purses and other personal items to chew on.

3. Nervousness. Other dogs may chew because they have a nervous personality or some phobia. If your dog suffers from thunder phobia, she can cause dramatic damage to your house on stormy days. In addition to thunder, your dog may develop fears of fireworks, wind, and a variety of other noises.

4. Fun! Last but certainly not least, dogs chew because it is "FUN".

If your dog is a destructive chewer, how do you deal with it?

The solutions will vary based on the dog and the reason for the dog's chewing. But one simple time-tested solution is to give the dog something of his own to chew on. There are many chew toy options at the pet store or online.

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