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Jane Lefler
Jane Lefler, Animal Behaviorist
Category: Dog Training
Satisfied Customers: 19106
Experience:  Dog breeder/Trainer and Behaviorist 18+ years
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My 6 year old rescue ***** ***** Molly chews all her toys

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My 6 year old rescue ***** ***** Molly chews all her toys to bits and her bedding she doesn't chew any thing else though I have had jack Russels before amd know they do this but I haven't found a way to halt this yet and any help would be great thanks Karen
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Dog Training
Expert:  Jane Lefler replied 2 years ago.
Karen,
My name is Jane. I have been working professionally with animals especially dogs in both health and behavioral issues for over 18 years. I have over 14,000 satisfied customers. It will be my pleasure to work with you today.
.
In order to supply you with the best information, I do need to ask for some additional information. Once I receive your answer, it will likely take me about 30-45 minutes to type up your response. I hope you can be patient.
.
Is she crated or not?
What type of toys does she have?
How many walks does she get?
Are they fast pasted walks or do you allow her to investigate?
How are you using treats and rewards?
Does she do this when you are home as well?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

No she isn't crated and she has at least 2 walks a day one is a short one at night but the other we take our time and she is let off the lead to have a good sniff ect, we use the rewards for stopping when we say no or if she has been good eg no mess at night.She ignores balls and sticks outside the home and doesnt chew anything.

when we adopted her in June we were told her previous owners had never let her off the lead and left her for 9 hours a day they also let her sleep on their bed and fed her human food both of which we have managed to change she now sleeps downstairs and funnily enough doesn't chew at night

regards Karen

Expert:  Jane Lefler replied 2 years ago.

Karen,
.
It sounds like she is bored and thus taking out her frustrations on the bedding and toys since she sounds like she was taught that furniture was off limits for chewing at one point or another.

Treats when she stops on command is good, except some dogs will associate the treat being given with the chewing rather than the stopping. Thus they will start chewing to elicit the "NO" and get the treat. I'm not saying that Molly does this but that it is a possibility.

So I'm going to suggest some things that should help the situation. One is obedience training. It helps stimulate the mind as well as creating a well adjusted behaved dog that is under your control. The following site is helpful for teaching you how to train your dog. Be sure and click on the link to the page on obedience at the bottom. and links on subsequent pages leading to detailed instructions.

http://www.schutzhund-training.com/training_theory.html
.
Training works best if you train at least 30 minutes a day (two 15 minute sessions). I would start making your dog work via the Nothing in life is free program (NILF). It is outlined below.
http://www.pets.ca/articles/article-dog_nilf.htm

I think you may know some of this and even have done some of this already given the strides you have made with Molly. Now some other things would be teach the no chew command. Basically,you will need to do something similar to what you are doing, but no reward for her stopping the destructive chewing. Instead reward her when she is not destructively chewing only and give the reprimand "NO" when she does. No treats when she displays the unwanted behavior. When you do, it confuses her a bit.

Get some different bedding and toys. Some beds carry a chew proof warranty. This company makes them. The raised bed is a good choice.
http://www.k9ballistics.com/?q=tuffbedseries

There are also toys available that are made to withstand chewing. I have rottweilers and a chihuahua and They can destroy a great deal of toys over time, but I've come up with a few things that seem indestructible. One is a special balls. One is large and smaller dogs and larger ones both like. Smaller dogs tend to push it around with their heads.
http://www.amazon.com/Virtually-Indestructible-Best-Ball-10-inch/dp/B0002DI32C

The other one is a rubber coated baseball. None of my dogs so far have managed to destroy this which is saying something since they can destroy a tennis ball in about 2 minutes or a baseball itself in less than a day. Something about the designs stops the destruction. The price shown is for 12.
http://baseball.epicsports.com/prod/10096/markwort-9-pitching-machine-baseballs.html

Kongs are another good choice and they make ones with a treat compartment. You can fill the compartment with peanut butter, yogurt and meat baby food that does not contain garlic or onions. Fill it and freeze it before giving it to her. It takes them a long time to get the frozen treat out which helps stop destructive chewing. Kong makes other indestructible toys as well to stop destructive chewing.

So you can put some toys that are hard to destroy down and the others when you can watch and reward or reprimand destructive chewing and teach the dog which ones can be chewed hard and which ones can't. Remember to rotate toys weekly to combat boredom as well. Remember fast paced walks are better than slow walks as a tired dog is a happy dog.

I hope this information is helpful to you and you are satisfied with my response. If you would like any additional information or have more questions please don’t hesitate to press the reply to expert or continue conversation button so I can address any issues you still have .

Jane Lefler, Animal Behaviorist
Category: Dog Training
Satisfied Customers: 19106
Experience: Dog breeder/Trainer and Behaviorist 18+ years
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