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Not my shoes!

Why is it that dogs love shoes? You aren't watching for just a moment, and fido is running down the hall with your favorite pair of slippers! Slippers aren't the only thing your precious pup can get into when no one is watching: pillows, couches, paper, table and chair legs, or even you walls! It's no secret that your pet can wreak havoc on your home with destructive behaviors. The question on everyone's mind though is why? and how do I stop it?

Let's address the why first for destructive behaviors. The truth is there are many reasons why your dog is chewing on your things we will go over the three most common.

1. It feels good to chew on!

This is a very common reason for your dog to be chewing on your things. It just feels good on their mouth to chew it. Many dogs find that especially true for soft things like pillows or leather. So when they see that your kids favorite stuffed animal is available or you left your slippers by the door they can't wait to sink their teeth in and enjoy their favorite chewy.

2. It smells good

This one is especially true for shoes or personal articles of clothing. Dog's opinion of what smells good is very different than our own. Most of time when we say EW! They say YUM! This goes without saying that a nice stinky shoes can smell like roses to your pup and they just can't help chewing on something that smalls so darn good. It can also be related to the fact that is smells like you! Your dog loves you and your sent so, when they find your dirty hamper or smelly workout tennis shoes they just want to snuggle up and have some relaxing chew time with your smell.

3. It's a game!

If you are a fan of keep away you, will understand why dogs find it so fun to play it with your things! It is just so entertaining when mom or dad gets upset and chases me all around the house when I grab their things. Dogs love to play and if they have found a way to get you to play with them whenever they want they will take full advantage. So whenever the thought arises they know exactly what to do for you to stop whatever you are doing and yell and chase them.

Now that we understand some reasons why, how do you stop it? The answer to this is just as unique as the reason why your dog is chewing in the first place. I will go over the three common reasons I mentioned, but there are so any more that are linked to more serious problems that your pup is dealing with. It is always recommended to seek a trainer's opinion first before starting on any course of training. We will help you get to the root of why your dog is doing these destructive behaviors so you can live a chew free life.

1. It feels good to chew on!

In this case a simple answer would be to provide something for your pup of similar or the same texture as they are choosing to chew on. Dogs love and need to chew and if your slippers feel just right looking into dog toys that feel similar can be very helpful. This way your dog has their own slippers that they can chew on and you can have yours remain intact.

2. It smells good

This one can be taken as a complement to you that your dog just wants to be near your smell. You can then find something you would rather your dog chew on and get your sent on it. The way I would recommend is getting a soft plush dog toy and sleeping with it for a couple of nights. This will get your sent onto the toy. Then when your dog is wanting to snuggle up with your smell they have a toy of their own they can mouth on that isn't your things.

3. It's a game!

This one is a bit more involved since you have to control your emotions. Thats right your reaction to them grabbing your things, is key to them wanting them in the first place. The best thing you can do the next time your pup wants to wind you up for a thrilling game of chase me, don't react at all. Don't move towards them, don't say anything, or even look at them. Just like that you've taken all the fun out of their little game. Now this isn't to say they might now still run off and destroy your thing, but if that is the main reason they are doing then this will help. If you take away the reason for them wanting to take your things in the first place, it just isn't as much fun.

Hopefully these have been helpful for you to understand some of the reasons your dog might be chewing on your favorite things. Now of course if your dog not only destroys whatever they got ahold of but also eats it then health risks are apart of this. You should seek help from a professional dog trainer to help you. It is also always recommended for a trainer to come in and help you asses the reason your dog is chewing on your things. This way you can truly find success in your training endeavors. If you need help with your destructive pup let us Help! Contact us to and we will help you find the training success you are looking for.

Happy training.

Morgan Head Trainer at Morgan's Pawsitive Pup Training

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