Keep Your Paws on the road
Dogs need to chew – it’s how they clean their teeth and release stored up energy.
Just like little babies, young puppies like to explore/experience the world around them with their teeth.
You can give your dog stuff to chew on or your dog will find it for himself. If you leave it up to your pooch, he may choose your carpet or your shoes.
Having your dog chew up things in your home is frustrating and can get expensive, so it is better to go to the pet-store and find some chew toys and chew foods for him. Read on to find out about chew toys and chew foods and why having both is important.
I often hear people say that their dog doesn’t like to chew, even though they provide many toys for him to do so. If this is the case with your dog, read on, because every dog needs to chew to keep his teeth and gums healthy. You may just need to find the right thing he likes to chew on.
Also there can be other underlying behavior issues that lead to a dog to chew through your door, but in this blog post I want to address the dog’s need to chew – not behavior issues such as separation anxiety or other issues.
With this in mind, I’d like to start by reviewing the difference between chew toys and chew food.
Chew toys are toys that encourage to chew, but are made from materials that the dog cannot and should not eat. On the other hand, chew foods are digestible items that are made to last for some time to allow the dog to chew and break off parts. Chew foods are safe to eat and are digestible.
It is important for you to be clear on the difference, as you need to make sure your dog does not ingest parts of his chew toys. As a general rule, if your dog destroys his chew toys quickly, they are either too small for him, or not suitable. It is important that you choose the right kind of chew toy to keep your pet save. Children’s toys are often rated by age, which indicates that certain toys can become a choking hazard for younger children; similarly dog toys are sometimes rated for strong chewers, but unfortunately this is not as widely used as it is with children’s toys. Please be sure to always supervise your dog when you first introduce a new toy to him. Once you learn that a particular item is safe, you can leave it out for the dog to go to as he chooses.
Chew foods, as mentioned before, are made to encourage chewing and should last for several days. When your dog eats up the chew food within a few minutes, it is likely too small and does not allow for consistent chewing. It may be a great treat for him, but you still need to provide something he can actually chew on for longer periods of time.
As with chew toys, be sure to supervise your dog as you introduce new items. You want to be sure that the chew food is not too small and does not become a choking hazard.
We highly recommend that you have several different types of chew toys and chew foods out for your dog.
Natural bones, deer antlers, bully sticks and synthetic bones are great examples of eatable dog chews.
I love to give our dogs raw marrow bones. The bone itself will be around for a long time and our dogs come back to them over and over, even after they have eaten off the meat and marrow. You can also "reuse" the bones by filling them with peanut butter and freezing them.
Rope and rubber toys come in all kinds of designs and sizes. Rope toys are great for shredding. Don't be alarmed if your dog likes to destroy them. The rope shredding is lots of fun for dogs and provides a floss-like cleaning of his teeth. When the rope gets pulled apart, be sure to dispose of small pieces so your dog does not ingest them.
There are a lot of choices at the pet store and online when it comes to buying chew toys or chew foods. Beware that many of the flavored items can stain your carpets!
Dog toys and chews can also be very expensive. If you do not have a lot of money to spend on these items, consider the following:
Every dog is different. So you may need to try out different types of chew toys or chew foods to find the ones your dog likes. If your dog does not chew at all, consider having his teeth checked. He could have an infected tooth or gums that hurt him.
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Until next time: keep your paws on the road!