Training your Shihpoo puppy
There is more involved in training your puppy and making it a compatible and friendly member of the household than simply housebreaking, which is usually the focus of most puppy training. Chewing is part of the developmental stage that helps strengthen both teeth and jaw, so puppies love chewing. Not only do they love it, they need to do it as a healthy part of growing up. We just don’t want them chewing on our stuff!
It is useless to try to prevent a puppy from chewing altogether but you can make sure he’s not chewing on items like furniture and shoes instead of on her toys and other appropriate things. Luckily for small dog breeds such as the Shihpoo, their chewing is not very destructive! But larger breeds can destroy items in a short period of time.
The following are a few instructions on training a puppy not to chew your furniture.
Monitor your pup closely to figure out how and when he’s drawn towards your furniture. Is it when he’s playing and exploring? Bored? When there are no toys around or when he’s feeling ignored or neglected? You can correct this bad habit easily if you observe your dog’s behaviour and take steps to alleviate the underlying issue causing her to chew your furniture.
Before your puppy gets close to your furniture, or if you find him already chewing on your furniture, distract him by making a noise or throwing a toy to him to chase. Use the short attention span of puppies to your advantage in this case! Always give them a more interesting option.
Pups do not chew to be deliberately destructive and have little sense of looking after their things to make them last. Dogs live for the moment and right then they need to chew! They also chew to hone chewing and bitting skills – an instinctive behaviour they once needed to survive. So give him lots of quality toys particularly meant for chewing and when it has enough of these, it won’t have any interest in chewing any “forbidden” things.
When the pup cannot be supervised or no one’s home, keep him in a kennel or confined to a small space in the house so he doesn’t have the option of roaming freely in the house and chewing on thousands of objects, or discovering any new spot in which to have “accidents” and leave a mess.
Positive reinforcements usually encourage good behavior so when your puppy, is going for your furniture, but instead picks up a chew toy to play and chew, excessively praise it.
If your puppy just cannot stop chewing on your furniture, take note of the places he’s normally drawn to. Get a bitter spray from a pet store and apply on the legs, arms and fabric of your furniture. The smell and taste of the spray should disinterest and repel your pet from further chewing on your furniture.