"Chewing equals a "Redirection Strategy"
You must establish and maintain a leadership role with your dog. Almost all dog problems come from just a few things that seem oh so minor, but are in reality, very important: lack of exercise, lack of leadership and lack of time spent with your dog.

It is very natural for dogs and children to put things into their mouths. It feels good to them. Dogs are just doing what comes natural when they eat, drink and even play with their mouths. As a doggie parent, your job is to help them learn the proper way to entertain themselves and understand what is acceptable and not acceptable to place their mouths on and/or chew on.

Train your puppy to chew on appropriate bones and toys

Most puppies start teething at about 3 - 5 months of age and continue for sometimes several months, till all their molars are in. Puppies and dogs enjoy appropriate bones for their entertainment, teeth and muscles of mastication.

Do give your baby an acceptable bone and chew toy. We have found that the best bones and toys are "Kongs", "Sterilized Beef Bones" and sometimes "Nylabones" or "Gumabone" for the smaller mouths. Nylabone makes a "Nylabone Double Action Dental Chew" that is fun for puppies and the jagged part of it helps to clean a little tarter off the teeth. The sterilized beef bones slowly wear down as they gnaw and chew on them and do not splinter. These bones and toys provide a safe and enjoyable chewing outlet for your puppy or dog, which is important for your dog's mental and physical well being.

These bones last for months and months and the Kong toys last for years and years. The "Kong" toys come in lots of different sizes, colors and some of them you can put a little peanut butter, liver mix, cheese or cream cheese mixed with dog food inside to keep them interested for hours trying to get the treat out of the toy while you are away. The "Kong Wubba" is a fun one that comes in puppy sizes and big dog sizes. It has some tails on it for your puppy to grab and sling around. The "Merrick Flossies" are natural beef tendons twisted and make a good chew. The "Multipet Nuts for Knots-Rope Ball" help to floss their teeth and they enjoy throwing them up in the air and either catching them or fetching them. Eventually as the ball slowly unravels, you will need to throw it away, but it takes months for this to happen, depending on how much your puppy enjoys chewing and playing with it.

If you offer your dog a bone, and he or she doesn't seem to care for it, don't give up! Some pooches are finicky about their chews. It is possible that your friend doesn't like the consistency of the bone, or perhaps the toy or bone is just too big to really get a good grip on it, perhaps too bland for the taste buds, or maybe they are in the mood to play with a rope ball or chew on a flossie instead. Whatever their preference, keep trying until you find the right bone, flossie, rope ball, or kong toy.

Chewing is a very natural behavior for puppies and dogs, and there are a number of benefits that chewing offers. Constantly rotating toys and letting your puppydog know what toys belong to them will help to prevent destructive chewing on things that do not belong to them.

Puppy Chewing on inappropriate items.

Many bones and toys help to scrape away the tartar that can build up and cause bad breath, staining, periodontal disease, and is the best way to remove puppy teeth. Puppies, just like children, like to chew on something hard to relieve the discomfort in their gums as their adult teeth come in. It's a very appropriate behavior that provides them with a pleasurable activity when they are bored, have a lot of energy to burn, when they are teething, or when they are just curious.

Chewing helps your puppy develop strong, healthy jaws, and very importantly, trains them on the items that are acceptable and not acceptable to chew on. Canines are naturally inclined to use their mouths for many things and that is how they learn a great deal of information that can be successfully used for positive training moments.

When you exercise your puppy, keep them busy playing with and chewing on their own bone and chew toy in a confined environment and direct their activities, they are much less likely to be bored and go searching for your favorite shoe.

A lot of dogs don't have much to do during the day or whenever you are gone. Canines are not able to do what people can do to keep themselves busy. They can't read their favorite book, shower, research on the computer, go for a drive, or watch TV. Try to think of activities for your dog that you think he or she would enjoy. A good exercise for you is to pretend you are your dog, get down on your hands and knees and take a good look around the room. Try to think like a dog might think and determine if there are any items like shoes, pencils, purses, briefcases, kid's toys, backpacks or other things on the floor or within your reach that your dog might be curious about and think are fun to play with and maybe even explore and chew on a little bit just for fun. If any of those belongings are important to you and something you would like to keep, then pick it up and put it away.

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