It is not uncommon for a Bulldog owner to have stories of finding their leather purse or other valuable items shredded beyond recognition. Chewing is a behavior not unique only to Bulldogs but to dogs in general. They just seem to love putting things in their mouth and chewing them until they are torn to pieces and generally unusable. The Bulldog is a tenacious and sometimes stubborn dog and this makes the normal stages of development a little more challenging. How can you as his human enjoy your dog without sacrificing your things and having them damaged? Well, firstly you have to understand why Bulldogs chew so much.
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The Root of the Behavior
There are a few reasons why Bulldogs start chewing too much. Teething is one of the main reasons. When teeth erupt or when deciduous teeth are replaced by permanent teeth, it can get very painful and this prompts dogs to chew so that the discomfort is relieved. Chewing is very likely to occur when Bulldogs are teething and if not corrected, it can become a long-standing problem until he grows into adulthood. Bulldog puppies may also chew not only because they are teething but because it is a means for them to explore their surroundings. Just like infants, they discover their world by putting objects in their mouths, so they chew toys with various textures. This keeps them busy and satisfies their curiosity. Separation anxiety can trigger your Bulldog to start chewing destructively. If the chewing only happens when you are away from home, then you may be dealing with separation anxiety. Chewing is almost always a symptom of another issue.
If your Bulldog has too much energy and nothing to use it on, that energy will be redirected to other things, such as the items in the home, most probably your favorite pair of shoes. You have to ensure that your beloved canine is engaged and a couple of the ways are through games such as hide and seek or fetch. There are also a few medical issues in canines that can cause chewing and some of these are eating disorders such as eating non-food items, viruses, and nutritional deficiencies. Gastrointestinal problems may also cause your dog to try chewing items to induce vomiting. If you find the destructive chewing and vomiting quite sudden, you must consult a veterinarian right away. It is important that you determine what is causing the behavior so that you can come up with a possible solution, keep your valuables safe, and keep your dog healthy and happy at the same time.
Encouraging the Behavior
Chewing is a destructive behavior but only if your Bulldog is chewing the wrong things and this is something which must be discouraged. As their humans, it is our responsibility to understand that what we sometimes consider as unwanted behaviors are natural for dogs. Digging and chewing, for instance, can be considered destructive but it is something that all dogs naturally do. So the focus of your training should not be on preventing your dog from chewing but it should be on making sure that your Bulldog chews on the right objects, like his chew toys. Bulldogs have strong jaws and they are known to love to chew on things. They can easily “redecorate” your living room in no time with their chewing.
One of the things you can do to prevent your home from getting obliterated is to puppy-proof your home if you have a little Bulldog. Puppies love to explore their surroundings and the objects in it. Remove any items which are undesirable or unsafe. Ask everyone in the house to pick up their books, toys, and electronics. Leaving items out in the open will only prompt your Bulldog to chew on them. Provide your Bulldog with toys that will stimulate them mentally and physically. Remember that not all toys are created equal. You also need to select toys that will withstand long hours of chewing. Another way to redirect your bulldog’s behavior is to immediately clap your hands, say a firm “No,” and give your Bulldog a chew toy if you catch him chewing something he should not be chewing. Give your dog ample exercise. Frequent but short periods of brisk exercise will help your Bulldog drain all of his energy. When he is too tired, he won’t be interested in chewing on things.
Other Solutions and Considerations
if you have a little Bulldog puppy who is teething, another solution for you to consider is to provide distractions to keep him busy. A frozen chew toy will be very helpful, as well as a wet, frozen washcloth because they help soothe the gums. Refrain from giving your puppy a teething ring meant for children because it contains chemicals harmful to dogs and it also won’t be able to withstand your dog’s sharp teeth. Also, we can’t stress enough how a strong leadership is of importance. Dogs start to display various behavioral problems when they do not have a strong leader. It is necessary for you as their human to assume the role of an alpha male.
Bulldogs are not only cute dogs, they also make excellent companions, even for small children. However, their natural behavior, such as chewing, can sometimes lead to problems, as well as various destroyed objects in the home. It is important to know what the cause of your dog's chewing is so you can provide solutions. Take good care of your Bulldog and they will give you years of joy and genuine friendship.