You walk into the living room, and there it is: a brand new book shredded on the floor, your favorite shoes gnawed on and torn up, and your accent pillow, well, missing its stuffing. The culprit behind all this damage is entirely clear: your Golden Retriever.
Although this breed is best known for its charming, engaging personality, this dog was designed to be a sport dog assisting hunters in carefully retrieving downed prey such as waterfowl. As such, the Golden Retriever is a dog that is inherently mouthy. Combine genetics with puppy teething and youthful shenanigans, and you have a house covered with the remnants of your shoes.
You can successfully train your Golden to stop chewing. Understand that you are working to some degree against the dog’s instincts, but with the right training, patience, and consistency, you can show your dog the way you want her to behave around the house.
It’s vitally important for both your furniture and home belongings and your Golden Retriever’s safety that you help her to curb her chewing habits. Damage to your personal belongings is costly as it is, but even more problematic is the danger of your dog ingesting something foreign that she has chewed. If your Golden swallows a piece of shoe or stuffing, that can cause a blockage in the intestinal system. Expensive surgery will be necessary to remove the items, and if not discovered quickly enough, your dog can die.
Additionally, training your dog to stop chewing, through substitution or redirection, gives your dog practice at improving her listening skills and better understanding your expectations concerning her behavior. With time, practice, consistency, and patience, you can teach your Golden Retriever to stop chewing.
The three training procedures below involve different settings, and you might find that one location works better for your dog depending on her energy level. Other items, like chew toys and treats, may also be beneficial to have on hand for training.
Of utmost importance is training your dog with consistency and patience. If your Golden Retriever is a puppy, understand that it may take a bit longer for her to learn what to chew and what not to chew. Patience is still required even when training an older dog who may not have been taught correctly or at all. Keep training sessions short and always take a break if you or your dog get frustrated.