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Top 11 Tips on How to Stop a Dog From Chewing Furniture

Are you tired of coming home to find your furry friend has turned your furniture into a chew toy? As much as we love our dogs, their chewing habit can be pretty frustrating. But don’t worry, I’ve got you covered. This guide is packed with the top 11 tips on how to stop a dog from chewing furniture. You’ll learn everything needed to keep your furniture intact and your home peaceful. 

Why do dogs chew on wood furniture and others?

1. Teething

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Puppies, in particular, may chew on furniture as part of the teething process. It helps alleviate the discomfort of teething by relieving their sore gums.

2. Boredom

Boredom can lead to dogs chewing your furniture. If they lack mental and physical stimulation, they may resort to destructive behaviors, such as chewing, to alleviate their boredom.

3. Attention-seeking

Some dogs do this to get attention from their owners. Even negative attention, like scolding, can reinforce the behavior if it succeeds in catching the attention they crave.

4. Anxiety or stress

Dogs may resort to chewing as a way to cope with anxiety or stress. Changes in the environment, routine, or the absence of their owners can trigger stress-related chewing.

5. Lack of proper chew toys

If dogs don’t have appropriate outlets for their chewing instincts, they may turn to household items like furniture. So, you should provide them with suitable chew toys that can redirect this behavior.

6. Nutritional deficiencies

In some cases, dogs may chew on non-food items due to nutritional deficiencies. You need to ensure they have a balanced diet to address this issue.

7. Lack of training

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Inadequate training and unclear boundaries might lead to unwanted chewing behavior in dogs. It’s crucial to provide your furry friend with consistent guidance regarding what objects are appropriate for chewing and what not.

11 tips on how to stop a dog from chewing furniture

1. Provide appropriate chew toys and rotate them regularly

Dogs love to chew stuff, so it is essential to give them safe and durable chew toys. Also, change the toys every once in a while to keep them interested and avoid boredom.

You can even give something filled with yummy treats or frozen snacks. This will fulfill their chewing habits and also provide mental stimulation. It will be a fun and refreshing alternative to furniture. 

When your dog chooses a toy instead of furniture, reward them with love and treats. This way, they’ll understand that good chewing behavior comes with rewards.

2. Engage in interactive play

Playing with your dog is a great way to bond with them and redirect their urge to chew. Try playing games like tug-of-war, fetch, or hide-and-seek with toys. You will make it clear that toys are for playing, not furniture. You can also introduce commands like “drop it” when retrieving items. This reinforces good behavior and obedience while also making playtime more fun!

3. Supervise and redirect

Dogs tend to chew things they shouldn’t when they’re left alone. Therefore, you should keep an eye on them, especially in new places or when they’re teething. If you catch them chewing something they shouldn’t, say “no” firmly and give them an approved chew toy to play with instead.

To stop this from happening again, gradually increase your dog’s time in different parts of the house while you’re watching them. This will allow you to intervene and help them learn good habits.

4. Bitter-tasting deterrents

Another tip is to use bitter-tasting sprays or deterrents on furniture surfaces. These products are designed to discourage chewing by making the furniture taste unappealing to your dog. But you must ensure the deterrent is safe for pets and follow the manufacturer’s instructions. Also, reapply the deterrent regularly, especially after cleaning or if you notice your dog attempting to chew despite previous applications. 

5. Increase exercise and mental stimulation

Keeping your dog active and mentally stimulated is important to prevent destructive behavior such as chewing. Regular walks, playtime, and interactive activities will burn off their excess energy and make them less likely to turn to chewing furniture for entertainment. Additionally, you can use puzzle toys and games to engage their mind and keep them occupied, which can be as tiring as physical exercise. 

6. Create a safe and comfortable environment

Take a look around and see if there’s anything in your dog’s surroundings that might stress them out. Sometimes, when dogs feel anxious, they start chewing on things. So, make sure they have a comfy and safe spot to chill out whenever they want. If you introduce your pet to some new stuff or place, do it gradually to keep the positivity going. 

7. Teach basic commands

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Training your dog to obey simple commands like “leave it” and “drop it” will be super helpful in preventing them from chewing furniture they can get their paws on. When they listen and do what you ask, make sure to reward them with treats and praise. Consistent training will strengthen the bond between you and your pup, making it easier for them to follow your guidance and avoid destructive behaviors.

8. Use crate training

Crates can be a great way to stop your furry friend from destroying your stuff, especially when you’re not watching them. Our canines think of crates as little homes where they can feel safe, and it can keep them away from your furniture when you’re not around.

First, introduce the crate slowly and make it a positive experience. Use treats, toys, and soft bedding to make it look inviting. Then, not only would your dog stop chewing furniture, but they will also have a cozy and safe shelter to relax.

9. Regular dental care

Dogs with dental problems may chew excessively. Therefore, you should take them for regular dental check-ups and cleanings. Also, remember to care for their teeth and gums at home. This proactive approach prevents furniture chewing and will contribute to their overall well-being.

10. Consult with a professional trainer or behaviorist

If your dog is still chewing despite your efforts, it may be best to consult a professional dog trainer or behaviorist. They can identify the specific triggers and provide personalized strategies to address the underlying issues. This will ensure a more effective and long-lasting solution.

11. Capture chewing behaviors on camera

It’s a good idea to use technology to help you out these days. One cool trick is to set up a camera to see what your dog is up to when you’re not around. By watching the footage, you are able to figure out when they like to chew stuff or what makes them do it. You get to the root of the problem and then have a better plan to train them better.

How to prevent dogs from chewing furniture in the future

1. Early socialization

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Socializing your dog is a must-have. This process involves exposing your pup to many new experiences in a positive and controlled environment. It will build their confidence, reducing the likelihood of anxiety-related behaviors like destructive chewing. However, you should do it gradually and safely to prevent them from becoming overwhelmed or frightened. 

2. Regular veterinary check-ups

The next thing to do is to schedule regular check-ups with your vet. By doing so, you can make sure your dog remains in tip-top shape. After all, medical issues like dental problems or gastrointestinal discomfort might lead to excessive chewing, and nobody wants that! So, be proactive and take care of their health.

3. Modify the environment

Make the environment less tempting by removing access to items your dog frequently targeted for chewing. You can use baby gates or close doors to restrict their access to certain rooms or areas. It’s a simple but effective way to keep your belongings safe and your pet happy. Give it a try, and let me know how it works out!

Conclusion

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By following these expert tips and staying consistent, you can stop your dog from chewing on your furniture. Tailor the techniques to fit their needs and build a loving relationship based on respect. And who knows, you might even witness a heartwarming scene of your dog cuddling contentedly next to your well-preserved furniture.

Last but not least…

For further training and an all-in-one solution for most behavior problems your dog has now or may have in the future, check out this free online dog training workshop that improves dog-owner relationships and prevents poor behavior like: 

    • Barking
    • Accidents
    • Leash pulling
    • Not coming when called
    • Jumping on people
    • Running out the door
    • Chasing cars or animals
    • Chewing
    • Nipping or biting
    • Begging
    • Getting too excited
    • Ignoring commands

The workshop is conducted by Dr. Alexa Diaz, Ph.D., one of the most respected service dog trainers in the United States, and Eric Presnall, host of the Animal Planet TV show “Who Let the Dogs Out.” Many readers have loved it. Click here to get it.

About us: Pet Chao is a community for Asian dog breed enthusiasts. Our goal is to keep you and your four-legged friend healthy and happy by providing valuable resources and fostering a like-minded community.

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