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Canine Behavior/obsessive chewing/eating


I have a five year old rottweiller/shepherd mix who will chew, eat and destroy anything.  She does not just destroy things she eats them. She has eaten both a sheet and towel that I put in the kennel where she sleeps. I have not been able to find any dog toy she cannot eat within an hour.  The Nyla bone slowed her down as she chewed it into fine sharp points  that tore up her gums.  Kongs are no match for her either.  She eats sticks, blankets, towels, hairbands, pillow and blanket stuffing and plastic toys.  We cannot keep a regular dog bed in the house as she will eat it.  She was diagnosed with masticular myositis about three years ago.  She takes prednisone daily to control her condition.  Is there anything we can do about this behavior?

Thank you

It sounds like she definitely doesn't realize what she can and cannot chew on. What is best for this situation is replacement. Absolutely every time she is chewing on something she shouldn't be, take it away with a firm "NO" and give her something that is okay, such as toy or a treat.

Something else to consider is how bored is she? If she has too much time on her hands, what else is there to do but chew and eat things. I would make a routine of incorporating playtime with training. This will both stimulate her as she will be learning new and being rewarded for those learned things as well as mentally wearing her out as well. And if you've ever thought about training classes, I would give those some thought as well.  

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Melissa Burg, RVT/Behavior Consultant


I have experience with multiple obedience issues, including anxiety, different types of aggression, introductions to a new pet and basic obedience situations, such as housebreaking, excessive leash pulling and excessive barking. There are several approaches to each behavior issue, depending on the animal's environment, as well as the breed, sex and age. I can also help you decide whether the problem sounds medical or behavioral.


I recently graduated with a Veterinary Technician degree with an emphasis in behavior and obedience training. I spent 5 years working in animal shelters where I trained shelter dogs in basic obedience and corrected behavior issues and educated adopting owners how to continue the training at home.

"Pawfect Pets;" a weekly column on canine and feline health and behavior tips.

Associate's Degree in Veterinary Technology from Des Moines Area Community College in Ankeny, Iowa.

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