How to Get Your Puppy to Stop Chewing if It Likes Bitter Spray

by Amy Hunter
Teaching your puppy what he can chew on is an important part of early training.

Teaching your puppy what he can chew on is an important part of early training.

Digital Vision./Photodisc/Getty Images

Chewing is normal behavior that you should expect from all puppies. The key is to redirect chewing urges so your pup chews on designated chew toys and not whatever he likes. A puppy whose chewing is out of control can cause a lot of damage to the house as well as make himself sick. Bitter spray is a common training tool when teaching your puppy what he can't chew, but some puppies don't find it a deterrent. For those, you will have to concentrate on other training methods.

Step 1

Keep your home picked up. The easiest way to keep your pup from chewing your favorite shoes or your phone charger is to keep your shoes and chargers out of his reach. You will still need to supervise and train your puppy, but removing as many temptations as possible will make your job much easier and increase his odds of success.

Step 2

Provide a variety of chew toys. Choose different toys because your pup will likely have a preference. Hard rubber chews and twisted rope bones are popular with puppies, as well as hard, bouncy balls and nylon bones.

Step 3

Reprimand your puppy when you catch him chewing. Even with a variety of chew toys, you will find your pup picking up a set of headphones or some other restricted item left out. Clap your hands, give a firm "no" and replace the item with a chew toy. Repeat the process any time he has something in his mouth that isn't a chew toy.

Step 4

Play games so he will learn to recognize his toys. Set out a chew toy and then ask him, "Where's your toy?" At first you will have to do a bit of coaching and leading the way, but encourage him to go to the toy and pick it up. When he does, praise him. Repeat the process until he learns to go look for a toy on command.

An Item You Will Need

  • Chew toys

Tip

  • To avoid confusing your puppy, never give him an old shoe, towel or stuffed animal as a chew toy. You cannot expect him to know the difference between your old, worn running shoes and your brand new ones.

Photo Credits

  • Digital Vision./Photodisc/Getty Images

About the Author

Amy Hunter has been a writer since 1998. She writes about health and lifestyle issues and enjoys writing about hiking, camping, trail running and other outdoor activities. Her work has appeared in "Sacramento Parent," ASPCA's "Animal Watch" and other print and online publications. She is the author of "The History of Mexico" and "Tony Gonzalez: Superstar of Pro Football," aimed at young-adult readers.

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