My dog is chewing everything in sight. What can I do?

My dog is chewing everything in sight. What can I do?

It's very normal for young dogs, especially puppies, to explore the world with their mouth in much the same way children explore the world with their hands. This desire for exploration, along with a few other reasons, can lead your dog to chew items you’d rather they left alone. To help you manage your dog’s chewing, this article explains:

  • Why dogs chew
  • How you can stop your dog from chewing
  • What other pet parents are asking about chewing

Why does your dog chew?

Chewing is a natural behavior for dogs of all ages. Puppies commonly chew to alleviate the pain associated with teething, while older dogs chew because they:

  • Think it’s fun
  • Are bored, anxious or frustrated
  • Need more exercise

Understanding why your dog is chewing will help you manage their chewing behavior.

How can you stop your dog from chewing?

To help minimize unwanted chewing behavior:

  • Minimize opportunities for mistakes. Pick up and put away all items your dog may want to chew. This includes shoes, socks, handbags, etc.
  • Limit your dog’s access to the things they want to chew. Use a baby gate or keep your dog on leash when indoors in order to limit their access to the things they’re interested in chewing.
  • Make sure your dog gets lots of exercise. By providing your dog with the opportunity to exert their energy in a healthy way, you minimize the amount of energy they can spend chewing unwanted items in your home!
  • Give good chew toys. Bully Sticks, Benebones and Yak Chews are all great options.
  • Curb boredom with work to eat toys and bowls. Making your dog work for their dinner or snack, is a great way for them to expend mental and physical energy. Here are a few products we love: Fun feeder, KONG classic toy, and the Toppl.

Frequently asked questions about dogs chewing

At what age do dogs stop chewing on everything?

Teething is one of the most common reasons dogs chew. If your dog is chewing because they’re teething, you can expect them to stop chewing on everything once all of their adult teeth have come in. This typically happens when a dog is between 6 and 8 months old. That being said, chewing is a healthy activity, and you should continue to give them good chew toys even after the teething phase.

Why does my dog chew through everything?

If your dog isn’t teething, they could be chewing because they’re anxious, bored, need more exercise, or simply think it’s fun. To help curb your dog’s desire to chew items around the house, minimize their access to the things you don’t want them to chew and always provide good chew toys.

How do I get my dog to stop destroying things when left alone?

Destruction when you leave the house can be a sign of separation anxiety. To minimize destruction, try not to leave your dog alone longer than they can handle and pick up and put away all items your dog may want to chew. This includes shoes, socks, handbags, etc. You may also want to consider using a baby gate or crate to limit their access to the things they’re interested in chewing.