We’ve outlined 10 potential reasons a dog might chew or engage in destructive chewing type behavior.
We’ve also linked you to a guide where you can find out how you might start managing this type of behavior and even stop it.
Let’s check it out!
NOTE: this is an informational and general guide only. It is not professional advice. See a qualified expert like a vet for professional advice.
Why Does My Dog Keep Tearing, Ripping & Chewing Everything Up? – 10 Reasons
How To Stop My Dog From Chewing, Ripping & Tearing Everything Up…
Before we get into the reasons WHY your dog is engaging in destructive behavior, if you want to skip straight to the guide telling you how to stop destructive chewing, you can check it out here:
- How To Stop Your Dog From Chewing, Ripping and Tearing Everything Up – FULL GUIDE with Solutions
What Are The General Reasons That Dog’s Chew or Engage In Destructive Chewing Behavior?
There’s a a few reasons a dog may try to chew, tear and rip everything up, including but not limited to:
1. Attention Seeking – dogs may destroy things to get your attention.
2. Boredom – Dogs have a decent level of intelligence, and they need mental stimulation. Some breeds are very intelligence and need a high level of stimulation. If you don’t give them this mental stimulation, they will keep their brains occupied with other things like chewing.
3. Lack of exercise and excess energy – Chewing may be a way that dogs expend energy they haven’t spent during walking or other activities where they are getting adequate exercise. Big dogs especially need regular exercise.
4. Keeping their jaw strong an teeth clean – dogs naturally chew on bones and chewable items as a way of keeping their jaw strong and cleaning their teeth. If they aren’t getting their chewing from acceptable chew items, they will look for things you don’t want them to chew to replace them
5. Hunger – dogs have a few main drives, one of which is to eat. A hungry dog may chew on items when they are hungry either out of frustration, or to try to satisfy the hunger feeling in their body
6. Lack of obedience training or strong leadership – it’s possible your dog hasn’t been taught, or they have forgotten what acceptable behaviour is around the house. Some breeds also seek a strong leader, so if you let the boundaries slip around the house and your dog is allowed to do whatever they like, they may think chewing has become acceptable too.
7. Loneliness and separation anxiety – A lonely dog may get so lonely that they need a release. Chewing is one way a dog might release tension when they are stressed or scared from being alone.
8. Another mental condition – it’s possible there may be something else going on mentally (they might have developed a compulsive behavior for example) or your dog may have temperament or behavioural issues which could be caused by a whole range of things from poor breeding to mistreatment as a puppy and adult. Your vet is the best person to deal with serious mental and health conditions like this, and they may suggest a professional dog trainer.
9. Youth – Puppies naturally want to explore things with their mouth
10. Teething – Puppies go through teething up until about 6 months of age – where they want to chew on things to ease the pain and ache of new teeth coming through.
Why Does My Dog Keep Chewing Up His/Her Bed and Blankets?
Dog beds are usually mattress type beds or contain some type of stuffing.
Dogs might like to chew up beds because it fits firmly in their mouth and to get to the stuffing inside.
Blankets are also a challenge for dogs to chew up because they get to tear and rip them apart – the tightly knitted fabric doesn’t come apart easily.
Why Does My Dog Keep Chewing Up His/Her Crate?
Dog crates are usually made up of that thin metal wire and plastic.
Both thin metal and plastic are attractive materials for a dog that wants to chew.
Specifically with a dog crate, some dogs may not like being in the crate itself, and separate to the reasons listed above for chewing, a dog may chew a dog crate to get out of the crate so they aren’t restricted to a small space anymore.
Why Does My Dog Keep Chewing Up The Carpet?
Some people think that some dogs can develop an attraction to some types of fabric – maybe they like the texture/feel or taste of it.
Another possibility is that carpet can get all types of odors, smells and things trapped in it. Maybe your dog is attracted to one of these smells or something in the carpet fibres and thinks digging it up will get them to something under the carpet when in fact it’s just the smell of whatever it is that’s trapped in it.
The other thing with carpet is that some dogs find it a good challenge to pull the carpet up if they have nothing else to play with or chew on.
Why Does My Dog Keep Chewing Up The Furniture?
Furniture is usually made of wood.
Wood in general is a material that dogs like to chew on because it is hard, but soft enough not to hurt their teeth and to chew through.
Why Does My Dog Keep Chewing Up My Underwear?
There might be two main reasons for this:
1. There might be scents on your underwear that your dog is drawn to – whether it’s your scent or something else
2. Dog’s might enjoy trying to chew apart the elastic or cotton or other material in the underwear
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