How to Stop Your Dog from Destructive Chewing Behaviors

Why Does My Dog Chew Everything?

Dogs have an innate desire to chew, which serves various purposes depending on their age and needs.

As they grow, chewing remains an instinctual behavior that keeps their jaws strong and teeth clean. However, when chewing becomes destructive, it can lead to frustration for pet owners and potentially dangerous situations for the dog.

To address destructive chewing, it’s essential to understand the reasons behind your dog’s behavior. Some common causes include:

By identifying the underlying cause of your dog’s chewing habits, you can develop a targeted approach to curb the behavior.

Your Dog Is Bored

To keep your dog from getting bored and resorting to destructive chewing, it’s essential to provide them with plenty of mental stimulation. Here are a few ideas for activities that can help keep your dog’s mind engaged and prevent boredom-induced chewing:

By incorporating a variety of mentally stimulating activities into your dog’s daily routine, you can help prevent boredom and reduce the likelihood of destructive chewing. Remember to be patient and consistent in your efforts, and always supervise your dog during playtime to ensure their safety.

Is Your Dog Anxious or Stressed?

Anxiety and stress can be significant factors in a dog’s destructive chewing behavior. To help your dog cope with these emotions and prevent inappropriate chewing, consider the following strategies:

Remember, managing a dog’s anxiety or stress is a process that requires patience, consistency, and a positive approach. By working with your dog to reduce their anxiety levels, you can help them feel more secure and confident, ultimately reducing the likelihood of destructive chewing behavior.

Or Maybe Your Dog is Seeking Attention?

If your dog is engaging in destructive chewing as a way to seek attention, it’s essential to address this behavior by providing them with positive attention and interaction. Here are some ways to show your dog love and attention, which can help reduce attention-seeking destructive chewing:

Remember, it’s crucial to provide attention and affection on your own terms, rather than solely in response to your dog’s demands or destructive behavior. 

Recognize the difference between affection and attention towards your dog. By proactively offering positive attention and interaction throughout the day, you can help reduce your dog’s need to seek attention through inappropriate means like destructive chewing.

Dog-Proofing Your Home

One of the first steps in preventing destructive chewing is to dog-proof your living space. This involves keeping valuable or dangerous items out of your dog’s reach. Consider the following tips:

By minimizing the availability of inappropriate chewing options, you can reduce the likelihood of your dog engaging in destructive behavior.

Using Deterrents to Discourage Chewing

In some cases, you may need to use deterrents to discourage your dog from chewing specific objects. Deterrent sprays with unpleasant tastes or smells can be applied directly to the items you want to protect. Some common deterrents include:

When using deterrents, be sure to test them on a small, inconspicuous area first to ensure they won’t damage the item. Reapply the deterrent regularly, as the scent or taste may fade over time.

Redirecting Your Dog’s Attention

When you catch your dog chewing something inappropriate, it’s crucial to redirect their attention to an appropriate chew toy. Here’s how to do it effectively:

By redirecting your dog’s attention and rewarding them for chewing appropriate items, you can gradually shape their behavior and reduce the occurrence of destructive chewing.

Creating a Safe Space

When you’re unable to supervise your dog directly, providing them with a crate or safe room can help prevent destructive chewing. Ensure the space is comfortable and equipped with safe toys to keep your dog occupied. Consider the following tips:

Remember, a crate should never be used as a punishment, but rather as a safe, comfortable space for your dog to relax and unwind.

Chew-Proof Accessories and Furniture

In addition to training and prevention, you can also invest in chew-proof accessories and furniture to minimize damage to your belongings. Some options to consider include:

While these products can help reduce the impact of destructive chewing, they should be used in conjunction with training and behavior modification for the best results.


Destructive chewing is a common issue faced by many dog owners, but with patience, consistency, and positive reinforcement, it can be successfully managed. By understanding your dog’s chewing habits, dog-proofing your home, providing appropriate chew toys, and addressing underlying issues, you can help your furry friend develop healthier, more appropriate chewing behaviors.

Remember, every dog is unique, and what works for one may not work for another. Be patient and persistent in your efforts, and don’t hesitate to seek professional guidance if needed. With time and dedication, you can help your dog overcome destructive chewing habits and enjoy a happier, more harmonious household.