When your dog or new puppy begins chewing on your furniture, rugs, or other items in your home, you may feel helpless. It is easy to feel like your dog has taken over the house and you have no hope to correct the undesirable behavior. With a little bit of work and patience, you can stop your dog from chewing your furniture and regain your house in these five easy steps.
1. Provide Proper Chew Toys
It is natural for dogs and puppies to chew. Some dogs like chewing more than others, but they all do it. You must provide your dog with proper chew toys and teach them to chew the toys, not the furniture. If your dog is a strong chewer, make sure you choose durable chew toys such as nylon bones or hard rubber chews. Lighter chewers may prefer softer chew toys. If your dog becomes quickly bored with the chew toys, rotate them. Hide one or two chew toys for a week, or until the dog becomes bored with his/her current toy(s), and then switch the hidden toy for a current toy.
2. Introduce a Chewing Deterrent
A sour or spicy spray is a great way to stop your dog or new puppy from chewing your furniture. The spray is applied to the areas your dog chews. When the dog smells and tastes the deterrent, he/she will not like the smell and taste and will stop chewing. In time, the dog will stop attempting to chew the sprayed areas. You can find chewing deterrent sprays at most pet stores, but be warned that it will not work on all dogs. Some dogs may even like the taste. If this is the case with your dog, try a few drops of hot sauce mixed in a spray bottle of water. Let the dog smell and taste a drop on your finger, then spray the mixture on the furniture. You house may smell a bit spicy for a day or two, but your furniture will be spared!
3. Be Consistent
Dogs learn by repetition. You must decide on a method of learning and stick with it. When you catch your dog in the act of chewing, start with a stern “No,” lead your dog away from the furniture, and then give the dog a chew toy to chew on. Instead of teaching the dog that chewing is bad, this teaches the dog that chewing furniture is bad, but chewing chew toys is acceptable. The dog is learning what it is allowed to chew. If you are consistent, the dog will learn the behavior.
4. Enlist Help
Everyone in your household must be on the same page to teach the family dog to stop chewing on the furniture. If each member of the household is scolding the dog differently and/or rewarding the dog in different manners, the dog might get confused and will not understand what behavior is correct. Make sure that each member of the household is disciplining and rewarding the dog in the same way, and you will find greater success in training.
5. Confine the Dog
If you cannot be around the dog at all times to catch him/her in the act, confine the dog when you leave the house. If you do not confine the dog, he/she might chew on the furniture when you are not around to correct the behavior. Scolding the dog for chewing when you return home is not effective because the dog may not know why you are scolding him/her. You must catch the dog in the act, and you must prevent them from committing the act when you are not around to correct it. We recommend placing them in a heavy duty dog playpen or top rated outdoor dog kennel, as recommended by Dog Product Picker. This way your dog will have the freedom to roam around, while still staying confined.
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