One of the things that dog owners have to deal with is destructive chewing. Canines with the affinity to gnawing will destroy everything, including their cozy beds. Dog beds are very attractive subjects for chewing – it’s soft and filled with puffy material. But instead of purchasing dog beds repeatedly, there’s a way on how to stop a dog from chewing his bed.
Why does my dog bite down on his bed?
Some dog breeds are more likely to be destructive in chewing. The likes of Great Danes, Bulldogs, Pit Bulls, and Mastiffs are prone to destructive chewing. But no matter what the breed of your canine is, there’s a way to arrest the negative habit.
Young pups chew to ease the discomfort of teething. As they grow old, the pup may outgrow the habit.
However, if your dog doesn’t get enough exercise or develops separation anxiety, the chewing will ensue. And since the pooch has larger daggers and stronger jaws, the result is destructive.
Dogs tend to chew their beds because it’s squishy. They will also chew shoes, slippers, plush toys, and just about anything that they find handy.
How to stop my dog from chewing his bed
If the bed chewing of your dog is becoming a problem, you can do the following to fix the behavior:
1. Trace the root cause
The first thing you should do is trace the root cause of the chewing problem. If the chewing happens while you’re away at work, it’s possible that your dog has separation anxiety. In this case, you can consider crate training your dog will help a lot.
If a specific sound or trigger is causing the destructive chewing, desensitization may work to change your dog’s behavior. It will also help if you can remove the trigger to prevent your dog’s exposure to it.
For example, the loud sound of a siren, fireworks, or speakers can make a dog anxious.
2. Give your dog enough exercise and playtime
Another main reason why dogs chew aggressively is their lack of physical activity. With a lot of energy to spare, they will vent out their interest in their bed. Aside from toys, your dog will be left with their squishy bed all day long if you are at work.
Morning walks are helpful as well as mentally stimulating playtime. Your dog will be snoozing soundly by the time you leave the door for work. If you’re busy, you can hire a dog walker to ensure that your dog gets enough exercise.
3. Keep the dog busy
Boredom is your greatest enemy if you have a large hunting dog. If the pooch is left with nothing to do, it will start to look for things to get busy. Most of the time, it includes their soft beds and a lot of chewing.
Each dog has a unique personality. Some will love spending time on chew toys while others will thrive if you leave the TV on. You can also purchase a treat dispenser or a dog camera with two-way speakers to distract your dog.
4. Redirect the chewing habit
It’s impossible to remove chewing on all dogs. In this case, you can redirect your dog’s chewing instead. You can train your dog to chew toys and treats instead of targeting their beds. Positive reinforcement will go a long way.
Once your dog knows that chewing the bed is acceptable behavior, you can reward it with treats. You can also use chew toys like KONG stuffed with peanut butter and tasty treats. This will teach your dog that chewing the bed isn’t as delicious as chewing a treat.
5. Use an anti-chew spray
While performing other methods here, you can also use an anti-chew spray. Usually, these are bitter-tasting solutions that don’t pose harm to your dog. It just happens that the spray tastes off to discourage the dog from chewing the bed.
Spray this all over your dog’s bed. Still, make sure that the solution doesn’t have ingredients that may cause allergic reactions to your pet.
Many pet owners swear by the Grannicks Bitter Apple since it’s safe and effective in deterring the chewing habits of your dog.
6. Training will go a long way
When it comes to destructive behavior like aggressive chewing, training will do a lot of help. It’s important to teach your dog basic obedience. This way, you can call them when they try to chew the bed.
Crate training and advanced drills may reduce the chewing as well. Remember, though, that you should never use violence in disciplining your dog. Punishments, hitting, and any form of physical abuse will not help your problem.
7. Hunger might be the reason
Before you jump to conclusions, ask yourself this: am I feeding my dog before I go to work? If no, it’s possible that the pooch is hungry and venting out by chewing the bed.
At some point, dogs may get extremely hungry and try to eat their blankets and bed. This is a rare occurrence, but something worth considering.
8. Opt for an indestructible bed
If all else fails, it might be best if you invest in an indestructible bed. Some dogs really can’t use a plush bed. You should get a dog cot instead. This is made of a PVC or metal frame and a high-denier fabric as the sleeping surface. It’s almost impossible for a dog to chew this bed.
Dog owners swear by the Coolaroo Elevated Pet Cot. It’s not chewable, plus the fabric is very breathable. This is made to the strongest chewers so you’ll have peace of mind that your dog won’t shred it to pieces.
Aggressive chewing isn’t a new problem. It affects many dogs, especially those with a predisposition to hunt. Still, you can do something to solve the issue or redirect it, at least. Just make sure that you will utilize violence-free means in disciplining your pet.