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Why is your dog chewing up everything she can get her mouth on? Quite often it has to do with the fact that your dog is probably bored.
If you are very busy or frequently away from home, your dog has nothing to do, so she invents solutions of her own. Her solutions often involve something that belongs to you and she has no concept of how much something may or may not cost!
Some people think that the problem will be solved by getting their dog a playmate. This sometimes works, but be careful—it is not a guaranteed fix. You may end up with double the trouble when you double the fun. You may find that you end up with twice the destruction that you had before!
One way to curb some of this destructive behavior is by using a crate. By confining your dog to a crate, she can not get to your shoes or your favorite couch. In addition, it keeps her away from things that can do her harm. A crate can be moved from one room to another and allows her to feel that she is with you, but relieves you to go ahead and function as necessary.
Whether you decide to crate your dog, confine her to a special room, or place her outside; it is a good idea to give her something to do. Special treats and toys will serve as entertainment and likely save your yard! Hiding treats around the yard will help entice her away from doing things you’d rather she didn’t do. Even in a crate, it is a good idea to give her some treats, a chew toy or her favorite stuffed toy.
Dog toys are good solution. There is a wide variety of toys available and a wide range of prices. Be sure to look for toys that are durable enough for your dog and keep in mind that toys that were not designed as dog toys can often have choking hazards that you may not immediately think about. Buttons and eyes that come off are some of the things you want to be on the lookout for.
Some dogs are harder on toys than others. Be sure that you get a toy that can stand up to your dog’s chewing level. It may cost a little more money, but you don’t want a toy that will fall apart the first time your dog plays with it. It can be dangerous, if one of the smaller pieces get stuck in your dog’s throat or stomach. There are numerous toys on the market that are specifically designed for power chewers. Look for products by companies like Nylabone, Kong, and Orka. If you give your dog a ball, be sure that it is too big for your dog to swallow.
Many dog toys today are designed to allow you to put treats inside them. They actually become a kind of puzzle to occupy your dog. Toys are being designed on a regular basis to challenge your dog’s problem solving skills. Cheese stuffed into a sterilized bone (found at pet stores) can occupy a great deal of time. If it is hot outside, you might consider getting the kind of dog treat that you freeze. Your dog will enjoy playing with it until it thaws enough to eat.
People have differing opinions on Rawhides. Some people swear by them and others swear them off. An excellent alternative is something called a Bully Stick. They are not cheap, but dogs love them and they last quite a while. No matter what you decide to use, make sure to take the chew toy away when it gets small enough to swallow.
To truly keep your dog interested, change the toys out now and then. After your dog has played with a toy for a few days, trade it for another. The next time you bring it out, it will seem like a brand new toy!
By giving your pet something to occupy her attention, you will avoid the destructive behavior that has been a problem in the past and you both will be happier!
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100 years ago, most dogs were not even allowed in the house. They were kept as outside animals and probably slept under the porch or in the barn. More affluent people may have had a lapdog, but farmers and working people had dogs that were expected to work to earn their keep. It might have been by herding stock, protecting the property or by killing rodents—but they had a job, they did it, or they weren’t kept around.
In today’s society, most dogs are kept as pets and are often treated almost as if they are humans. We have grown to love our animals so much, that this is not really surprising. However, it can be a little confusing for the dog. Instead of having a clear-cut job, with distinct boundaries, she finds herself caught somewhere between being a canine, a pet, or almost human. When those lines are blurred, a dog may begin to challenge its owner because it no longer respects the owner as a leader. This challenge occasionally manifests itself as aggression toward humans.
Many owners allow their dogs to sleep with them in the same bed. There are millions of dogs who sleep with their owners and it never results in a problem. However, if a problem does begin to surface, and your dog is beginning to show aggression, experienced dog trainers agree that the place to begin curbing this behavior is by removing bed privileges. Just by making your dog sleep on the floor, in a crate or in another room, you will be making a point. The mere physical adjustment of you being on the bed, up higher than your dog will be a loud message.
Additionally, you will have to return to the basics. Your dog needs to be reminded that she is still a dog and that you are the leader. Being allowed in your bed is a privilege, not a right. Along with losing bed privileges, you will need to lower her status in other ways. For instance, your dog should not enter a room before you do. Entering before you is another sign that your dog is beginning to think that her status is higher than yours.
You simply need to re-establish who is boss. Don’t put yourself in danger by forcing the issue, but instead adjust in small ways, how you interact with your pet. For instance, you can work on some obedience. Teach your dog to sit before receiving her dinner. You could even feed her one kibble at a time. She needs to be reminded that you are the one who controls the food and everything else in her life. Have her sit at the door before she is allowed to go out. Small lessons will soon remind her that she is dependent on your for the good things in her life.
If your dog is having issues with aggression, you may find that she has problems with giving things up like toys or food. Guarding is another form of aggression that needs to be dealt with. If you feel that these behaviors are presenting a danger or if making small changes doesn’t seem to help, do not hesitate to consult a professional dog trainer. Aggression can develop into a serious problem and should not be allowed to continue.
There is no hard and fast rule that says you should or should not allow your dog to sleep in your bed. Many owners allow their dogs in their beds and have never had a problem. The most important thing is that you and your dog have a relationship that you both can live with. That should never include aggression.