Imagine coming from work and finding your favorite furniture covered with scratch marks. Dogs can chew on the pillows, table legs, and wooden seats. Almost every dog keeper has dealt with natural and destructive dog chewing behavior. Regardless of the kind of chewing your dog engages in, there are several home remedies to stop them from chewing furniture.
The most effective method to stop your dog from chewing is spraying your furniture with bitter deterrents. A perfect DIY project is to mix two cups of apple cider vinegar with one cup of white vinegar. Monitor your dog and spray any furniture surfaces it likes to chew. The homemade remedy’s smell and bitter taste will keep your dog off the furniture.
Other home remedies include alternative dog anti-chew sprays such as Anti Chew Dog Training Spray. However, before applying any medication, it is essential to understand why your dog is chewing furniture. I will tell you the reasons in this guide. You will also learn how to use home remedies to stop your dog from chewing furniture.
Why is my dog chewing furniture?
Here are some reasons your dog is chewing furniture:
Teething occurs in puppies between the age of zero and six months. Just as children feel pain and discomfort during teething, puppies also do. To reduce the discomfort from teething, your small dog will chew furniture.
However, teething is not destructive chewing behavior. It occurs naturally in all dogs. It is how you manage the dog that makes all the difference. Note that some dogs will continue to chew furniture even after their teething period.
2. Your dog is hungry
Some dog owners starve their obese dogs to manage the dog’s weight and health. However, a sudden decrease in calories, carbohydrates, and proteins in your dog’s diet can be fatal. Remember that dogs have a sense of smell that’s 40 times more than humans.
Therefore, a hungry dog can sniff food scents from your furniture or other household items to sustain hunger. If the dog finds your couch or seats in that condition, it will chew the furniture. On average, give your dog 30 calories per pound of its body weight daily.
3. Separation anxiety
Separation anxiety occurs when you leave your dog behind. Perhaps you’ve gone to work or the grocery store without your dog. If the dog is overly attached to a family member, the absence of the said person can trigger digging, barking, and chewing of furniture in your dog.
There are several ways to stop your dog’s anxiety problems. If your dog is overly dependent on you, avoid leaving it without warning. Additionally, do not leave your dog alone for extended periods. Otherwise, the anxiety about having you back can lead to destructive behavior.
4. Pent up energy
Pent-up energy is common among youthful and more prominent dog breeds. Pent-up energy is the energy built up in your dog’s muscles after eating. The energy build-up makes your dog restless. A dog with more energy and a little exercise will channel that energy to chewing furniture.
Dogs below three years old and large dog breeds such as the Catahoula leopard and German shepherds need playtime and exercises to release their pent-up energy. But if there is nowhere to channel that energy, they can chew on everything, including your furniture.
5. Medical issue
Your dog could also be chewing furniture due to an underlying medical issue. Pica is an example of one such condition. It makes a dog want to eat non-food items. Veterinarians believe the condition is caused by liver, pancreas, and gastrointestinal diseases.
A dog with the pica condition feels nauseous and chews furniture to cope. Unlike the other causes of dogs eating furniture, taking medical issues to your veterinarian is essential.
Home remedies to stop dogs from chewing furniture
Here are some DIY sprays and remedies to stop your dog from chewing furniture:
1. Apple cider vinegar and white vinegar spray
Mix two cups of apple cider vinegar with one cup of white vinegar. Fill a spray bottle with the mixture and spray it on the surfaces your dog likes to chew. For instance, If your notice claw marks on the furniture, spread vinegar mix into the area.
The DIY spray deters your dog in two ways. First, the dog’s superior sense of smell cannot withstand the vinegar scent. Secondly, the spray is bitter. If your dog returns to chew the furniture and manages to resist the vinegar, the bitterness will keep it off.
2. Plain white vinegar and lemon juice spray
If you don’t have apple cider vinegar, lemon juice is an alternative DIY spray. Mix two parts of lemon juice with one part of plain white vinegar. Unlike the first remedy I gave you above, plain white vinegar and lemon juice spray are friendly even to humans.
While the smell and bitter vinegar taste will stop your dog from chewing your furniture, the lemon juice will keep your room smelling fresh. Besides, dogs also abhor the sharp smell of citrus. If you can’t make this mix, squish some lemon on the furniture, and the dog will stop chewing.
3. Cayenne pepper spray
Use cayenne pepper spray to keep your dog far from the furniture. Cayenne pepper spray does not harm dogs but will cause significant irritation and discomfort to a dog that likes chewing furniture. However, do not make a very concentrated pepper spray.
Because dogs can smell it from far, mix only one part of the pepper with ten parts of water. Use a spray bottle to spray the pepper evenly on your furniture. If your dog goes back to chewing, the pepper will irritate its throat, nose, and eyes, stopping the dog completely.
4. Give your dog chewy toys
Another home remedy to stop your dogs from chewing furniture is by giving them chewy dog toys. Your dog’s size determines the size of the toy you should pick. Some of the best dog chew toys include West Paw Hurley, Goughnuts Medium, and Goughnuts Buster.
Chewy dog toys help to stop dogs from chewing on furniture. The toys also promote the dog’s dental health and relieve their stress and separation anxiety.
I recommend having a variety of chewy toys. Before leaving your dog home, replace yesterday’s toys with new ones to lessen boredom and reduce their urge to chew furniture.
5. Stimulate your dog physically and mentally
Physical and mental stimulation is an essential home remedy for dogs that can’t stop chewing. Remember pent-up energy? Yes? The energy builds up in the dog muscles? Stimulate the dog physically by taking it for a walk or exercise in the dog park. Consistency is key.
When the dog returns home tired, it will not crave your household items. Similarly, mental stimulation involves training your dog on specific commands. For example, teach your dog “drop it” or “leave it.” Therefore if you catch him chewing furniture, it will listen.
6. Use a pet camera to monitor your dog remotely
Consider a pet camera if your dog is chewing furniture when you are not at home. You can connect pet cameras such as Furbo dog camera and WoPet Smart Pet camera to your smartphone and see the dog remotely. Pet cameras bridge the gap between you and the dog.
Some cameras also have alarm and audio control. You can set the alarm to alert you whenever your dog is chewing your furniture. You will get a notification, see your dog in real-time, and command it in your voice to “stop it” or “leave it.”
Alternative dog anti-chew sprays
Although you can make some DIY spray remedies at home, here are the alternative dog anti-chew sprays to stop your dog from chewing furniture:
1. Anti Chew Dog Training Spray
It is the best alternative spray to break your dog’s destructive chewing habits. Although it tastes really bitter, Anti Chew Dog Training Spray is safe for dogs and humans.
The spray is three times more bitter than most dog anti-chew sprays. On top of that, it is free from alcohol, meaning it will not cause any allergies or lethargy to your dog.
2. Rocco & Roxie No Chew Spray for Dogs
Another cheap alternative dog anti-chew spray is Rocco & Roxie No Chew spray for dogs. It is twice as bitter and can deter dogs from chewing furniture, shoes, and electric cords. Apply it to the area frequently until the bad chewing habit in your dog breaks.
Although Rocco and Roxie No Chew Spray for Dogs will keep away most dogs from chewing your furniture, other dogs can find the taste appealing. To see results, spray large amounts of the remedy on your furniture consistently.
- The Humane Society of the United States. (2022). How to stop your dog’s chewing and biting problem.
UC Davis Veterinary Medicine. (2019) Unusual Eating Habits in Dogs and Cats. Clinical Animal Behavior Science.