Why Is My Puppy Chewing Furniture? Here is How to Prevent It.

Why Is My Puppy Chewing Furniture? Here is How to Prevent It.

Dogs Chewing Furniture: Understanding the Behaviour and Finding Solutions

As a dog parent, it can be frustrating and costly to see your pup constantly chewing on your furniture. Not only does it damage your belongings, but it can also pose a threat to your dog’s health if they ingest any harmful substances. The solutions to this problem might surprise you!

So why do dogs chew on furniture? There are several reasons for this behavior:

1- Teething: Puppies go through a teething stage just like human babies. During this time, they experience discomfort and soreness in their gums as their baby teeth are replaced with permanent ones. Chewing on furniture is a natural way for them to alleviate this discomfort.

2- Entertainment: Puppies when they are left alone for long periods of time, they may start chewing on furniture out of entertainment and they don’t know the difference between your furniture and their new toys. We need to teach them!

3- Anxiety: Some dogs may chew on furniture as a coping mechanism for anxiety or stress. This could be due to a change in their routine, fear of loud noises, or separation anxiety.

4- Lack of appropriate chew toys: Providing your puppy with alternative chew toys can help redirect their chewing behaviour away from your furniture while they’re teething

So, what can you do to prevent your puppyfrom chewing on furniture? Here are some solutions:

1- Confinement. Wether you use a crate an ex- Penn or a baby gate you need to create a safe space where your puppy can spend time when you can’t supervise. This space should be puppy proofed.

2- Supervision. If you’re puppy is out of his/her designated area make sure your supervising.

3- Make sure your puppy have enough sleeping time. Puppies sleep on average of 15 – 20 hours per day. The lack of sleep can create excessive chewing and restless behaviors.

4- Keep your play time and training sessions short and sweet. Start teaching patience and self control by adding structure and little rules to every game. Puppies get more tired when you make them wait for things than when you rile them up and play endlessly. When you exercise or play too long with a puppy, they tend to get more cranky, aggressive and frustrated.

5- Address any underlying medical conditions: If your dog is chewing excessively, it could be a sign of a dental issue or other health problem. Schedule a visit to the vet to rule out any underlying conditions.

While dogs chewing on furniture can be frustrating, it is a common behavior that can be managed with the right solutions. If you’re still struggling to prevent your dog from chewing on furniture, consider seeking the help of a professional dog trainer or behaviorist for guidance.

© Gabriel Riesco, Pawmos Dog Training LLC |   All Rights Reserved June 2023

     

     

    Is A Dog Full Grown At 12 Months?

    Is A Dog Full Grown At 12 Months?

    Many dog breeds are considered to be fully grown by the time they reach 12 months of age, but this is not true for all breeds. The age at which a dog is considered fully grown can vary depending on the breed and size of the dog.

    Smaller breeds, such as the Chihuahua or the Yorkie, are generally considered to be fully grown by the time they reach 12 months of age. These breeds reach their full size and weight relatively quickly and do not experience significant growth after 12 months.

    Medium-sized breeds, such as the Australian Shepherd or the Cocker Spaniel, are typically considered to be fully grown between 12 and 18 months of age. These breeds may continue to fill out and gain muscle mass after 12 months, but they will have reached their full size.

    Large and giant breeds, such as the Great Dane or the Saint Bernard, can take much longer to reach their full size. These breeds may not be considered fully grown until they are 18 months or even two years of age. Large breeds typically have a longer growth period and take longer to reach their full size and weight.

    It’s important to remember that just because a dog has reached its full size, it doesn’t mean that it has reached its full maturity. Many breeds continue to mature and develop emotionally and mentally even after they have reached their full size.

    The general takeaway is that age at which a dog is considered fully grown can vary depending on the breed and size of the dog. Smaller breeds are typically considered fully grown at 12 months, while larger breeds can take much longer. It’s essential to remember that full maturity is not only based on physical growth, but also on mental and emotional development, which can take longer for certain breeds.

    © Gabriel Riesco, Pawmos Dog Training LLC |   All Rights Reserved June 2023

       

       

      How Can I Discourage and Stop My Puppy From Barking Excessively 

      How Can I Discourage and Stop My Puppy From Barking Excessively 

      Puppies are a lot of fun, but when fun turns into too much stimulation, they can also be quite vocal. Barking is a natural behavior for dogs, but excessive barking when it gets out of control is not. It can also become a nuisance and cause disturbance to both you and your neighbors. Fortunately, there are ways to discourage your puppy from barking excessively. 

      The first step to addressing excessive barking is to understand why your puppy is barking in the first place. There are different reasons why your puppy might be barking excessively. Here’s a list of the most common ones: 

      1. Overexcitement and/or overstimulation. This could be triggered by you coming home, you getting their leash, playing with too much excitement or too much stimuli overload in the environment. This is usually caused by the lack of self control. This barking will often be with a wagging tail, happy mood, spin in circles, some nipping and running to play chase, ears perked and head held higher. 

      2, Attention barking (usually reinforced unconsciously by humans). This barking is usually high pitch, annoying and relentless. Their tails may be straight or wagging, with their ears down/natural or at attention. Be careful with this behavior. If your dog is  barking to get your attention or treats and they get what they want when they bark, you’ll be reinforcing and encouraging the excessive barking. Be aware that negative attention it’s still attention and will reinforce the barking. 

      3. Triggered by a noise or sight (ex: a dog passing by your house or the mail man coming in). This type of barking usually triggers an automatic emotional response in your dog that spirals up into an uncontrolled barking. 

      4. Territorial barking (guarding or protecting). Your dog feels the need to protect your house. These barks will usually be deeper and may have a growl associated with them. They will also be fairly continuous and incessant. With territorial barking the body posture is usually leaning forward, tail is up and wagging, ears and and eyes are up and alert. It could be followed by a bite. This may happen at a later puppy stage 4 months and older. 

      5. Fear barking. Insecure/fearful dogs will show body language leaning backwards and backing up while their barking. Tail might be between the legs and tense, hackles raised, and low head posture. Some insecure/fearful dogs might bite and lunge when you turn your back on them and move away. 

      Once you have identified the underlying cause of your puppy’s barking, you can start working on a solution to address the behavior:

      1. Socialize your puppy

      Puppies that are not properly socialized may become anxious or fearful in new situations, leading to excessive barking. Socializing your puppy from an early age can help him become more comfortable in different environments and around new people and animals. Take your puppy for walks in different places, introduce him slowly to new people and dogs, and expose him gradually to various sights and sounds.

      2. Provide structured play and start teaching your puppy self control.

      Puppies that have excess energy and no self regulation may bark excessively as a way to release their pent-up energy. Providing structure play and teaching self control exercises will keep your puppy calm and content, reducing the likelihood of excessive barking. Take your puppy for exposure walks, play structured games where they slowly learn boundaries, and socialize them with well behaved older dogs that will teach them how to calm down.

      3. Teach your puppy the “quiet” cue.

      Teaching your puppy a “quiet” cue will teach him to understand when it’s time to stop barking. The quite cue is based on calming your dog down not on punishing your dog for barking. You can learn this technique in my online course Pawmos The Art of Dog Training

      4. Learn Behavior Training 

      Behavior Training is a powerful tool for training puppies. Rather than punishing your puppy for excessive barking, focus on self control exercises and activities.  Behavior Training is NOT about letting your dog misbehave and then correct, punish or redirect that behavior with treats. It’s about not letting the behavior to happen in first place when possible. The way to do it is to keep your dog in a sound state of mind or  “green zone”. Or bringing him/her back to “green zone” if he/she is already out of control. This will allow your dog to get better at social skills and coping skills in different environments

      Excessive barking can be a frustrating behavior to deal with, but with knowledge and consistency, you can help your puppy learn to bark less or stop barking . Understanding the underlying reason for your puppy’s barking, providing structured exercise, teaching the “quiet” command, and using Behavior Training will effective discourage and stop excessive barking.

      © Gabriel Riesco, Pawmos Dog Training LLC |   All Rights Reserved June 2023

         

         

        What Should I Do If My Puppy Exhibits Aggressive Behaviors?

        What Should I Do If My Puppy Exhibits Aggressive Behaviors?

        Getting a new puppy is an exciting and fun experience, but it can also come with its own set of challenges. One of the most common issues new puppy owners face is behavior problems, such as aggression. Aggression can be a serious problem if not addressed properly, as it can lead to injury to both humans and other animals. In this blog, I will discuss what you should do if your puppy exhibits behavior problems, specifically aggression:

        – 1. Identify the type of aggression. Aggression is a very general term. Here are some different types of aggression: Aggression because of lack of Social skills, Leash aggression, dog to dog aggression, human aggression, Stranger aggression, Fear aggression, Resource guarding (food, toys or humans), Territorial aggression, Trigger aggression (hats, uniforms, gender etc), Conditioned aggression (water sprays bottles, canes, brooms, sticks etc), Dominance aggression, Redirection aggression, Pure aggression (killer instinct)  and probably other types that I haven’t mentioned. As you can see there is a wide range of different types of aggression that are treated very differently.

        – 2. Identify the cause of the aggression The next step in addressing your puppy’s aggression is to identify the cause. When does the aggression start and why? Is your puppy under stress? Is it fear based? Is your puppy being dominant? Is your puppy in pain? Is your puppy overstimulated or frustrated? Is your puppy getting enough sleep or down time? Understanding the root cause of the aggression will help you develop a plan to solve the issue.

        – 3. Knowing the difference between Behavior Training and Obedience Training will save you a lot of time, money and energy. Going to a basic obedience group class will not make much of a difference. Once you have identified the cause of your puppy’s aggression and consulted with a professional, it’s time to implement training and behavior modification techniques. These can include Behavioral Training, coping skills, desensitization, counter-conditioning and management strategies.

        – 4. Consult with a professional If your puppy’s aggression is severe or you are unsure of how to address it, it’s important to consult with a professional. A dog behaviorist, dog trainer with aggression experience or a vet behaviorist can assess your puppy’s behavior and provide guidance on how to address and solve the issue.

        – 5. Be consistent and patient Addressing your puppy’s aggression will take time and patience. It’s important to be consistent with training and behavior modification techniques and to give your puppy time to learn new behaviors. Consistency is key in ensuring your puppy understands what is expected of them.

        – 6. Stay calm and present. It’s important to stay calm and present when addressing your puppy’s aggression. Getting frustrated or angry will only make the situation worse. Instead, stay patient and positive. 

        Addressing your puppy’s aggression requires knowledge, patience, consistency, and most likely the guidance of a professional. By identifying the cause of the aggression, consulting with a professional and implementing a behavior modification plan, you will be able to overcome your puppy’s aggression issues and become a well-behaved and happy member of your family.

            © Gabriel Riesco, Pawmos Dog Training LLC |   All Rights Reserved May 2023