Do you have a dog who destroys your furniture, chews shoes, eats slippers and chews up shoes, socks and other personal possessions? In many cases this behaviour is simply due to a dog being bored, poor diet and lack of exercise.
How do you keep a dog that’s destroying your stuff, that chews slippers, chews your shoes and chews up shoes and other personal possessions? The key is to use positive reinforcement to train the dog to do what you want.
Positive reinforcement is used in training a dog to do many things. When your dog destroys your shoes, give him a treat. When he does what you ask and you give him a treat, then he will repeat the behaviour. Dogs are generally very intelligent and can easily learn positive reinforcement.
Before you can use positive reinforcement to train your dog, you first need to understand your dog’s motivation for destroying personal possessions. Dogs mostly chew possessions because they want something that belongs to you. In some cases they will chew personal possessions as a form of punishment.
You need to determine your dog’s motivation for destroying your personal possessions. If your dog is chewing shoes and personal possessions because he is bored then give him a toy that belongs to you. Give him one toy or treat and one toy or treat and one toy or treat. He will soon associate chewing shoes and personal possessions with getting something you want from him. If your dog is chewing shoes and personal possessions because he is bored, then teach him to become active with toy training. When your dog becomes active with a toy give him a toy or treat. He will associate this activity with getting a toy and you will see an improvement in his chewing behaviour. The more active your dog becomes with a toy the less likely he will try to chew personal possessions.
Once you know why your dog is destroying your personal possessions, it is time to use positive reinforcement to train him to behave.
Positive reinforcement is not only used to teach your dog to behave. It is also used to condition your dog to behave in a specific manner. For example you want your dog to stop chewing shoes and personal possessions. You need to condition your dog to associate shoes with a chew toy and personal possessions with getting a treat.
One way of conditioning your dog to behave in a certain manner is through the use of positive punishment. A dog’s natural instinct when facing dangers is to defend themselves. A positive reinforcement, when coupled with a negative punishment, will teach your dog that chewing personal possessions is a bad thing.
Your dog may try to defend his shoes by chewing personal possessions. You need to punish your dog right away if this behaviour persists. Positive punishment involves giving your dog a small reward when he attacks his possessions. You may give him a small treat or toy. You should not make a big deal when you give him the reward because you want your dog to associate his attack on personal possessions with getting a treat and not because he attacked shoes. If your dog decides to attack shoes rather than personal possessions it is time to move to positive reinforcement.
When your dog starts attacking possessions with his mouth you should reward him and hug him, praise him and make a big deal of it. Give him a treat or toy. Your dog needs positive reinforcement because attacking possessions is the way he learns.
Use a leash when you take your dog on walks. Your dog will learn to go with you on walks because he is going to get a treat and also he will get to meet other dogs. Walk your dog in a central area away from your personal belongings. Do not allow your dog to attack personal possessions in your home.
Always observe your dog and try to figure out how to teach him to stop his chewing. It may be too late for you to stop your dog from chewing personal possessions. Remember you have to stop your dog from chewing everything he sees.
If your dog is chewing on your personal belongings try to distract him with a treat. You can put a toy up for him to chew on. Or you can throw a ball. This way your dog will not get distracted with a toy. Also if you throw a toy your dog may think it is a game. In this way he will not chew on it. You can also use this technique to train your dog not to chew on your personal belongings. In this way you will have no reason to worry about your dog’s aggression.
Dogs love to chew on anything they see. This can be very annoying for the owner and for you. Do not panic and do not give up. Use positive reinforcement and teach your dog not to chew on everything he sees.