If you have a puppy, you probably need to figure out how to stop a puppy from biting and chewing everything in your house. Kai has been a little rascal lately. He has been biting and chewing everything! He’s biting my arms, my hands, and he’s chewed three pairs of my sandals!
That’s why I decided to “nip” this problem head-on. (Sorry, I couldn’t resist.)
Puppies bite and chew. It’s what they do. While there’s no escaping this stage of puppyness, I researched the best ways to manage puppy chewing as much as possible. I compiled this list to share what I’ve found to have worked well for our Goldendoodles. You may need to change some of the choices based on the breed of your dog. Read on for my list of anti-chewing supplies below.
To be honest, I don’t get upset with Kai for his biting and chewing. At his age, I know it’s natural to explore everything and to ease the pain of teething.
But, I want to prevent the problems of chewing on items like furniture, walls, and carpet.
There are solutions to deal with these habits and hopefully prevent them from becoming an ongoing problem beyond the puppy teething stage.
Table of Contents
Why Puppies Bite and Chew
We’ve all experienced the pain of those tiny, needle-sharp teeth. Puppies just can’t help it, they must bite and chew. The puppy milk teeth begin to grow in at about 3 to 8 weeks old, and the permanent adult teeth gradually replace them. For this reason, puppies are in a constant state of teething up until about 4 to 6 months old.
If your dog or puppy chews on items such as wood trims, socks, or remote controls, it could be a sign of boredom. Puppies are active and energetic, and if they can’t expend that energy in a positive way, it can turn into destructive habits.
Before you know it, they’re having a field day with toilet paper like this!
Prevent Boredom to Stop Puppy From Biting and Chewing
Daily exercise helps your dog expend energy and provides mental stimulation. If your dog chews the corner of the wall when he’s bored, some physical activity and engaging playtime should provide stimulation and burn excess energy. Plus, it will satisfy his need for companionship.
Stop Puppy Chewing Problems Now To Avoid Bigger Problems Later
I know it’s not realistic to think I can completely stop Kai from chewing. His gums are inflamed from teething, and he’s exploring everything around him. Even so, it’s important to keep him safe and watch what he puts in his mouth. He’s already shown an interest in electrical cords, socks, and sticks. Pieces of these things could cause problems such as intestinal blockages or perforations!
Stock Up on a Wide Variety of Puppy Chew Toys
One of the best strategies for how to stop a puppy from biting and chewing is to redirect his attention to something else. But let’s be honest, not all chew toys solve the problem. Some chew toys are better than others, and dogs always seem to have their favorites.
If you find a particular toy your puppy loves, buy more than one. Dogs tend to chew up their favorite toys, and then you have to throw it away!
Keep a close watch on the condition of all your puppy toys, especially if they contain a squeaker on the inside. If puppies ingest the stuffing or the plastic squeaker, it can be dangerous!
Puppy Proof Your Home
To keep your puppy safe and minimize damage to your house, it pays to prepare your home with a puppy in mind. If you’ve ever baby-proofed your home, you’ll need many of the same things:
- Baby gates in doorways to keep your puppy in a confined area, or out of unwanted areas – make sure your pup can’t fit between any area of the gate. Puppies can be very resourceful in finding ways squeezing through or climbing over a gate, so you want to make sure you supervise them before leaving them alone with a gate.
- Electric socket covers
- Protectors for electric cords and wires
- Safety locks for cabinets
- Securing straps for trashcan lids – avoid using an open wastebasket when you have a puppy in the house. They love to empty trashcans and look for tasty treats that they shouldn’t have.
Also, eliminate clutter from the floors or tables. Set your puppy up for success by minimizing access to important belongings. Make sure items such as medicines, food, candy, or cleaning products are out of your puppy’s reach.
Crate training helps prevent problems and keeps your puppy safe when you can’t be right there. In addition, you want to keep doors closed to keep your puppy out of rooms. The Pet Cube is a great way to watch your dog when you’re in a different location. Your pup can hear your voice and will know you’re watching, even if you’re in a different room! It even dispenses treats! You can also use a more basic pet monitor camera to keep an eye on your dog.
Use Positive Reinforcement to Prevent Puppy Chewing
When planning on how to stop a puppy from biting and chewing, remember that negative punishments, such as shouting, spanking, or hitting can lead to other destructive behavior problems. Instead, respond by firmly saying “NO” and confiscating whatever your pup was nibbling on. Substitute a chewing treat, a chew toy or plush toy that will keep them busy. This will teach your puppy to chew on only what is allowable and help to satisfy the urge for chewing.
Puppy Chewing Supplies
It can be exasperating when trying to understand how to stop a puppy from biting and chewing. It can feel like every time you turn around, they’re getting into something else! But rest assured, this will pass!
The key is to teach him to chew only on the right things and not to search your house for chewing material.
The easiest solution: offer something better.
Between our other Goldendoodle, Zuma, and Kai, I’ve discovered the best chew toys that do a good job of distracting puppies from chewing the wrong things. Here’s what I’ve found that’s worked for us.
Your puppy will gladly accept a tasty chew treat instead of your sock or shoe. You just need to find some go-to favorites.
Bully sticks are an all-time favorite of our dogs. They’re a little rich and can cause an upset stomach, so it’s a good idea to limit the length of time your puppy has with a bully stick. Also, make sure your puppy has plenty of water available because they tend to make them thirsty. Another negative to bully sticks is that they have a strong odor. As an alternative, you can opt for an odor-free version. We like to try different varieties of bully sticks. This braided version is another favorite. It helps to a variety of different types to rotate through to keep them interested.
Our dogs absolutely love these “bones” that are filled with peanut butter.
Edible bones are also a good choice to add some variety when trying to figure out how to stop a puppy from biting and chewing. The only negative is they tend to eat them pretty quickly, so they don’t keep them busy for long. Too many at once can also cause diarrhea, so don’t overdo it. Goldendoodles can have sensitive stomachs, so we’re always careful when we introduce anything new into their diets. It’s important to gradually introduce a new food, treats or chews, just to make sure it doesn’t cause intestinal issues! We’ve learned this the hard way!
When figuring out how to stop a puppy from biting and chewing, look for a variety of toys that will help beat boredom. Choose one that your dog won’t destroy to beat puppy boredom. Both Zuma and Kai love the plush toys that crinkly sound. We like to have a wide variety of toys in different shapes and sizes and keep them stored in one location. We bring different toys out at different times so they don’t get bored with the same toys all the time. Zuma now knows the difference between all of her toys. In this funny video, you can see how she goes to her toy box to pick out just the right one.
Here are some favorites:
Interactive smart puzzles like this one and this one work well to entertain and satisfy their foraging instinct. There are so many choices available today, and it’s a unique option when determining how to stop a puppy from biting and chewing.
This Textured Nylabone is also a great option to help ease the pain of teething and keep your puppy busy. Although our dogs really like the traditional smooth Nylabone, the textured one gives them something new, and the bumpy feel seems to be satisfying during the teething stage.
In addition to understanding how to stop a puppy from biting and chewing, you want to be fully prepared before bringing your puppy home. If you’re bringing a new puppy home soon, I compiled my new puppy supply list here. This is what I’ve found that’s worked best for us, after bringing how two Goldendoodle puppies in the last two years.
By the way, Kai has his own Instagram account called @thatdoodkai, so you can follow him over there!
Why am I writing about Goldendoodles? Learn more here.
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