How To Deal With Your Dog's Teething Problem
There is a part of every puppy's life that every dog owner would gladly live without - that maddening, frustrating, must-chew-everything-that-isn't-stapled-to-the-ceiling, teething age.
At about 4 months old, our puppy will lose its first set of teeth and the adult teeth will begin to grow from the gums. The teething process continues on and off for several months and this is often a painful and uncomfortable process for our puppy. We will notice that our puppy is teething from his increased chewing and biting on everything imaginable that is within reach.
Although sometimes tiresome, teething is a stage all puppies must go through and, happily, it will pass fairly soon. Relieving our puppy's pain and protecting our possessions from the sharp little teeth will be our top priorities!
What we can do:
1. Crate Training
The best way to prevent destructive chewing during our puppy's teething stage is to crate train our puppy. In addition, this will keep him away from the deadly things he'd love to chew to pieces when we aren't looking, like electrical cords of appliances that are still plugged in.
Make sure we provide a crate that is big enough for our puppy to turn around in. It is also important that we make the crate a safe and happy place for our dog by providing him with stimulating toys while he is in the crate.
2. Chew Toys
Chew toys and other gnaw-ables are going to be very useful in helping our puppy during his teething stage of his life. Although it is always tempting to let our puppy to chew on an old pair of socks or old leather shoe, this action is tantamount to telling our puppy that ALL shoes and socks are available to him for chewing!
Frozen rubber teething rings will help ease the pain of cutting teeth when our puppy has to be crated for safe keeping while you are either busy or out.
In addition, always remember to:
a. Positively reinforce chewing on things he is allowed to with praise and petting, and try to identify each item with "Is that your stick? Good boy!"; and
b. Negatively reinforce his chewing on inappropriate items by removing the item and saying "No, that is mine." and exchanging it with a proper chew toy with "Here is your ball, good boy!"
3. No Chew Toys, try the following two tips:
Buy a few cheap wash clothes and soak them thoroughly with water. Then put the wash clothes in the freezer. When fully frozen, give it to the teething puppy to chew.
Mix chicken or beef broth with 1 � cup of water. Pour them into ice cube trays to made broth ice cubes. They are tasty treats on hot days.
Finally, teething puppies will put their mouths on us and it is up to us to teach them at an early age that this is not acceptable. Just as mentioned above, every time they exhibit mouthing behavior, we must redirect them to an acceptable chew toy (or frozen clothes or broth).
Another important factor in bite inhibition and limiting mouthing behavior is proper socialization. It is very important in this stage to take our dog to a puppy class or puppy play group. When allowed to play with other pups, our dog will learn what is acceptable play behavior. The other dogs will help him to learn that biting is not appropriate. Also socialising our dog to many different kinds of people and situations will help him not to be afraid of new things and will significantly lower the potential for biting.
And remember to praise your dog abundantly when he does the right thing!
You Can Do It!
A Happy Dog Lover and Owner