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Dog Training and Behavior

How To Cease Your Dog Biting Individuals – Dog Coaching Suggestions

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If your dog tries to bite someone, it’s important to act quickly. From getting expert help to using a muzzle, there are plenty of effective ways you can stop a dog that nips or bites.

Some of the most common reasons a dog may exhibit aggression towards someone include feeling fearful or frustrated, being defensive, guarding others or intimidation. Most dogs will engage in normal mouthing or play nipping, but if you spot your dog aggressively biting others, it could be time to take further action.

We speak to the experts at the Dogs Trust to find out how to stop your dog from biting people. Here’s everything you need to know…

1. Spot the signs early on

Even some of the most well-behaved dogs can occasionally bite people, so it’s important you spot any signs of aggressive or irritation early on.

“Any dog can act aggressively if they feel worried about something, so tackling dog bites relies on us all knowing how to safely interact with our dogs, and being able to spot the early warning signs that they are in distress before a situation escalates,” a spokesperson from the Dogs Trust tells Country Living.

“Subtle changes in your dog’s body language like their ears going back, tension in their body, or their tail tucked under are signals they are uncomfortable.”

2. Consider using a muzzle

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If you are worried about heading out on a walk with your dog, it could be worth considering a harness or muzzle — great for restraining your dog’s ability to bite, chew and bark. While a muzzle should not be used in place of training, it will prevent your dog being able to bite (or eat things they shouldn’t on a walk).

“If you’re concerned about your dog in public always keep them on a lead and consider muzzling,” add the Dogs Trust.

3. Pay close attention to your dog’s behaviour

Paying close attention to your dog’s behaviour will help you spot when things are leading to aggression. Whether it’s being around another dog or feeling hungry, this will help you to control the situation better and know when to take things further.

Top tip: if you can sense your dog getting more aggressive, always warn others. Don’t allow your dog to approach others and always use a lead when heading outside.

woman walking with two dogs

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4. Never leave them alone with children

If you have young children — or are visiting a friend who does — the Dogs Trust explain that you should never leave your dog alone with them. “No matter how well behaved your dog is, never leave them alone with your child, carefully monitor their interactions and intervene before worrying situations escalate,” they tell us.

5. Head to your vet

If you notice your dog has started biting people more regularly, it’s best to seek expert advice — they will be able to help you keep those aggressive tendencies under control.

“If you notice any changes in your dog’s behaviour, it’s worth visiting your vet who can check for any underlying causes and help with referring you to a qualified behaviourist,” The Dogs Trust add.

6. Take part in training

A dog that bites is dangerous. Not just for people, but also for the dog, so it’s best to take part in additional training.

“Dogs Trust’s Dog School provides dog owners with access to fun, reward-based training. These classes help owners to read their dog’s behaviour and to teach them skills that will enable them to settle in a home environment and cope with day-to-day events. If we can support people so they notice some of the more subtle ways dogs communicate with us, this all contributes to a better bond and fewer behavioural issues.”

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28 indestructible dog toys for aggressive chewers

KONG - Tires - Durable Rubber Chew Toy and Treat Dispenser for Power Chewers - For Medium/Large Dogs

Great for chewing — Best Indestructible Chew Toys

KONG – Tires – Durable Rubber Chew Toy and Treat Dispenser for Power Chewers – For Medium/Large Dogs

KONG
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This tyre-shaped chew toy has been made from durable rubber, so it’s perfect for determined chewers. It also gives owners the chance to fill the inside with tasty treats, too. Available in two sizes for you to choose the best for your breed. 

READ MORE: 6 dog games great for training and bonding

Nylabone Power Chew Textured Dog Chew Ring Toy Flavor Medley Flavor X-Large/Souper - 50+ lbs.

Chew ring — Best Indestructible Chew Toys

Nylabone Power Chew Textured Dog Chew Ring Toy Flavor Medley Flavor X-Large/Souper – 50+ lbs.

Nylabone
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US$10.49

US$6.29 (40% off)

Made from durable nylon, this long-lasting chew toy challenges the most aggressive chewers. Your pup is certain to love the tasty flavour, too. 

Dragon with Chew Guard Technology

Cuddly toy — Best Indestructible Chew Toys

Dragon with Chew Guard Technology

Moonmoon
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£21.42

As well as being cosy to cuddle, this sweet dragon toy features chew guard technology with a durable layer.

Kong Ring Dog Toy

Ring toy — Best Indestructible Chew Toys

Kong Ring Dog Toy

pet head
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£8.50

Built for durability, this bright red dog toy will offer your four-legged friend mental and physical stimulation. And at just £8.50, it’s a real steal buy. 

Wild Knots Bear

Fun bear toy — Best Indestructible Chew Toys

Wild Knots Bear

KONG
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£12.40

Soft yet durable, this cute grey bear has minimal stuffing and an internal knotted rope skeleton. 

Planet Dog Orbee-Tuff Planet Ball Blue

Tough material — Best Indestructible Chew Toys

Planet Dog Orbee-Tuff Planet Ball Blue

Planet Dog
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£11.80

One of the toughest dog balls on the market, this sweet ‘planet’ design has been made with award-winning Orbee Tuff material. Certain to provide hours of fun… 

West Paw Design Zogoflex Jive Dog Toy

Perfect for fetch — Best Indestructible Chew Toys

West Paw Design Zogoflex Jive Dog Toy

Zogoflex
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£10.25

Does your pup love to play fetch? Well, this dog toy is one of the most durable styles around — and will aim to stand the test of time, no matter how much it is used. 

Ruffwear Dog Toy with Rope Handle

Great for swimmers — Best Indestructible Chew Toys

Ruffwear Dog Toy with Rope Handle

RUFFWEAR
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£21.95

Ideal for dogs who love to swim, this floating fabric toy has a handle and is designed with abrasion-resistant materials for increased durability. Make sure not to forget it on your next beach trip. 

JW Pet Company Megalast Ball Dog Toy, Large

Ideal for larger breeds — Best Indestructible Chew Toys

JW Pet Company Megalast Ball Dog Toy, Large

JW Pet
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US$11.99

US$9.45 (21% off)

Want to treat your pup to a long-lasting toy? This floating ball has been constructed from thermo plastic rubber and is also infused with vanilla extract. 

Planet Dog Orbee-Tuff Squeak

Ideal for the water — Best Indestructible Chew Toys

Planet Dog Orbee-Tuff Squeak

Planet Dog
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£10.50

This is no ordinary ball: made with aggressive chewers in mind, it’s perfect for pups who need something firm to hold onto. It is 100% non-toxic, has a fun squeak sound and is infused with a natural mint oil. 

Pet-Fun Medium Mango - Safe Fun Durable Rubber Dog Chew Toy for Boredom, Virtually Indestructible Treat Dispenser, Long-Lasting Slow Feeder, Tough Strong Teething Toy for Medium/Small Dogs

Best for snack time — Best Indestructible Chew Toys

Pet-Fun Medium Mango – Safe Fun Durable Rubber Dog Chew Toy for Boredom, Virtually Indestructible Treat Dispenser, Long-Lasting Slow Feeder, Tough Strong Teething Toy for Medium/Small Dogs

Pet-Fun
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£13.99

This durable rubber mango toy — which can be filled with dog treats — is sure to provide hours of chewing fun. Perfect for small and medium dog breeds. 

Ruffer and Tuffer Tug Of War Rope and Chew Dog Toy

Tug of war toy — Best Indestructible Chew Toys

Ruffer and Tuffer Tug Of War Rope and Chew Dog Toy

Keep your dog entertained for hours with this colourful chew toy on a durable rope. The makers explain: “Ruffer and Tuffer is specially designed to be stronger than the average, with a unique construction that delivers added durability with superior strength.”

Dog Chew Toys for Aggressive Chewers

Ideal for aggressive chewers — Best Indestructible Chew Toys

Dog Chew Toys for Aggressive Chewers

ONEISALL
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£12.99

Nero Ball Ultra TM - Dog Training Ball On A Rope - Exercise and Reward Toy for Dogs

Great for training — Best Indestructible Chew Toys

Nero Ball Ultra TM – Dog Training Ball On A Rope – Exercise and Reward Toy for Dogs

The Nero Ball
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£36.66

Thanks to the built-in rope, owners can throw this ball further for their pups to chase. It is used by the K-9 police as well as the Military Working Dog Teams, so it’s both tough and durable. Brilliant if you want to train and motivate your dog. 

Go Quackers Duck Dog Toy

Fun duck toy — Best Indestructible Chew Toys

Go Quackers Duck Dog Toy

Joules
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£8.00

Give your pup a reason to have some fun with this adorable duck toy. Hardwearing and well-crafted, it has a hidden squeaker to keep your pet entertained. 

Idepet Dog Toy Ball, Nontoxic Bite Resistant Dog Chew Ball Food Treat Feeder Tooth Cleaning Exercise Game Ball

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Idepet Dog Toy Ball, Nontoxic Bite Resistant Dog Chew Ball Food Treat Feeder Tooth Cleaning Exercise Game Ball

Idepet
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US$8.99

Perfect for fetch and interaction with your dog, this ball has been made with extra-tough rubber to stand the test of time. Thanks to its soft and unique surface, the ball will also keep your dog’s gums healthy. 

Kong Airdog® Squeaker Football Dog Toy

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Kong Airdog® Squeaker Football Dog Toy

KONG
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£4.45

Let the fun commence with this long-lasting squeaker football dog toy. Perfect for keeping your dog entertained in the garden. 

Ruffer and Tuffer Mighty Wheel Dog Toy

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Ruffer and Tuffer Mighty Wheel Dog Toy

Ruffer and Tuffer
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£4.00

This strong wheel dog toy is perfect for aggressive pulling and tugging. The specially developed soft rubber design helps to clean their teeth and massage their gums, while its engaging shape will provide hours of fun. 

Chewable Stick Coffee Tree Wood Small

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Chewable Stick Coffee Tree Wood Small

GoodWood
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£7.49

This durable wooden stick is great for dogs who love to chew regularly. While keeping your dog occupied for hours, it’s also great for their dental hygiene.  

Kong Airdog® Squeaker Donut Dog Toy

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Kong Airdog® Squeaker Donut Dog Toy

KONG
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Built to last, this fun donut dog toy has been made from high-quality material will not wear down dogs’ teeth.

Interactive Fetch Dog Toy with Tennis Ball

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Interactive Fetch Dog Toy with Tennis Ball

KONG
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£12.44

Nylabone Dura Chew Plus, Chicken, Medium

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Nylabone Dura Chew Plus, Chicken, Medium

Nylabone
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£10.04

This chew toy encourages healthy, non-destructive chewing habits with dogs. 

Nylabone Gentle Puppy Dog Teething Bone

Great for puppies — Best Indestructible Chew Toys

Nylabone Gentle Puppy Dog Teething Bone

Nylabone
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£9.34

Great for young puppies, this gentle bone will help teething pups who have not yet formed any adult teeth. 

Pet-Fun Large Indestructible Pineapple -

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Pet-Fun Large Indestructible Pineapple –

Pet-Fun
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£16.99

This durable pineapple toy has been built to last, helping to solve destructive chewing, teething, dental health, boredom, separation anxiety, training, and exercise. 

KONG Jump n Jack Dog Toy

Great for heavy chewers — Best Indestructible Chew Toys

KONG Jump n Jack Dog Toy

KONG
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£13.35

We love this unique toy, which is great for chew sessions and endless fun. Top tip: fill with peanut butter to extend playtime and satisfy chewing instincts.

Petface Latex Onion Large Dog Toy

Onion toy — Best Indestructible Chew Toys

Petface Latex Onion Large Dog Toy

Petface
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£3.09

In a blush pink, this large onion toy is surprisingly durable. Best of all, it’s just over £3. 

Pet Qwerks REAL BACON Infused BarkBone

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Pet Qwerks REAL BACON Infused BarkBone

Pet Qwerks
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This durable Bark Bone is infused with real bacon and is perfect for even the toughest chewers. Its non-toxic and non-allergenic materials mean its safe for your pup to enjoy. 

KONG - Extreme Flyer - Durable Rubber

Rubber frisbee — Best Indestructible Chew Toys

KONG – Extreme Flyer – Durable Rubber

KONG
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£12.93

Looking for a durable rubber frisbee? Well, look no further, as this red style from KONG is perfect for keeping your four-legged friends fit and healthy. 

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Dog Training and Behavior

Why Do Dogs Chatter Their Teeth – Understand What It Means

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This post may contain affiliate links. We may earn money or products from the companies mentioned in this post.

In all my years living with a dog, I have witnessed some pretty bizarre behaviors. But one of the strangest things was seeing my dog’s teeth chattering.

The whole thing left me baffled because I couldn’t figure out if this was another quirky behavior or if there was something wrong with my pooch. If you ever witnessed this phenomenon you are probably wondering, why do dogs chatter their teeth?

While some dogs rattle their teeth when they’re cold, I knew this wasn’t the case with my dog. You see, it was the middle of the summer, and we were more likely to get a sunburn than frostbite while being out in the doggy park.

But low body temperature is just one of several reasons that can cause your dog’s teeth to chatter. And while this behavior may be interesting and funny to watch, it can also be a sign of illness.

So the next time you hear the sound of your dog’s rattling teeth, don’t simply chalk it up to a random bout of odd behavior.

In this article, I’ll tell you everything you need to know about dog teeth chattering and how to know whether it’s completely harmless or something you should worry about. Keep on reading to find out more!

Contents & Quick Navigation

What Does It Mean When A Dog Chatters Their Teeth?

There are many reasons why dogs chatter their teeth! Luckily, most of them are harmless and won’t warrant a trip to your veterinarian. However, in some cases, dog teeth chattering can be a sign of a serious medical condition for which your dog will need treatment. 

Like people, dogs sometimes start rattling their teeth as a means to express their feelings or as a natural impulse. But, at other times teeth chattering is a coping mechanism that helps your dog stay in control in a particularly stressful situation. 

As mentioned earlier, dog teeth chattering can sometimes be a symptom of an underlying health problem. If you suspect this is the case with your pooch, it’s important that you schedule an appointment with your veterinarian immediately.

Some of these conditions can be treated or managed with proper treatment, so take your dog to the vet as soon as you can!

Some of the most common reasons why dogs chatter their teeth include:

1. Low Body Temperature

Like people, dogs begin shivering and shaking when they feel cold. When the temperature starts to drop, the muscles in your dog’s body will start to twitch. The twitching creates warmth that raises your dog’s body temperature and helps them to get warm. 

As they begin to shiver, your pooch will use all the muscles in their body, including the neck and jaw muscles. So, as these muscles move, they can cause your dog’s teeth to rattle and produce a chattering sound. 

Short-haired dogs that live in colder climates are more likely to chatter their teeth than their canine counterparts that live in tropical climates. If you live in a colder area, keep your dog indoors only, and invest in a doggy jacket and dog boots to keep your pooch warm. 

Also, certain small breeds like a Chihuahua have a high metabolism, which can affect their ability to regulate their body temperature. This means that your small pooch may feel cold and start shivering and chattering their teeth even if you feel perfectly fine. 

If it seems that your pup’s shivering and teeth clattering is caused by low temperature, cover them with a blanket or dress them in a doggy sweater. Once your pooch gets toasty, their teeth will stop chattering and you won’t have anything to worry about.

2. Excitement And Joy

Teeth chattering is a surprisingly common behavior for excited dogs. If your dog starts chattering their teeth as soon as you bring out their favorite toy, chances are they are chattering because of the excitement.

Also, if your dog starts rattling their teeth as soon as you get home from work, this is probably their way of showing how happy they are to see you. 

Ultimately, if your pooch chatters their teeth only when they are very excited or joyful, this isn’t anything you should worry about. Think of this as another one of your dog’s odd behaviors and go with the flow. 

3. Smelling New Scents

Unlike us humans, our canine companions rely heavily on scent to navigate the world. Scent detection and interpretation are so important to dogs that they even have a secondary scent detection system besides their noses. 

The vomeronasal system, also called the vomeronasal organ, is located near your dog’s nasal bones and has a duct on the roof of their mouth. Essentially, the vomeronasal system gives dogs a chance to literally taste smells. 

To bring all the new and exciting smells into contact with this system, dogs will move their mouth and jaw in a variety of strange ways. It’s common for dogs to chatter their teeth when they are sniffing a patch of grass or concrete that was frequented by other dogs. 

Generally, this type of chattering is more commonly seen in male dogs than females. Also, you’ll notice that your pooch is clacking their teeth slowly and more purposely than when they are chattering from cold or excitability. 

This type of teeth chattering is completely normal, and you shouldn’t be alarmed if your dog is rattling their teeth after sniffing or licking something.

However, you should pay attention to the things your dog licks, especially if they aren’t completely vaccinated. Coming into contact with other dog’s pee and poop exposes your pup to all sorts of infectious diseases, including parvo.

4. Stress, Fear, Or Anxiety

Anxiety, fear, and stress can also cause a dog to chatter their teeth. Dogs that are feeling anxious may chatter their teeth at any time, but the rattling will be more pronounced right before, during, and after a stressful event. 

Dogs that suffer from separation anxiety usually begin chattering when their owners are getting ready to leave the house. Or, if your dog is scared of fireworks, you may notice that they are rattling their teeth during firework holidays. 

In these situations, dogs use chattering as a coping mechanism that helps them handle their fears and anxieties. While the chattering can be alarming to watch, the only thing you can do to help your dog is to find and remove the stressor. 

If your pooch chatters their teeth due to separation anxiety, try crate training and natural calming remedies, and work on desensitizing your dog. A certified behavioral specialist can also work with your dog and help them overcome their fears and anxieties. 

5. Displacement 

Some dogs may rattle and chatter their teeth while interacting with other dogs. In this case, dogs use chattering as a subtle form of displacement, which usually happens when they are feeling scared or threatened by the other dog.

When faced with a threat, a dog will start chattering their teeth to stay calm and pull the other dog’s focus from them. In these cases, the other dog will stop paying attention to your dog and try to figure out where that strange noise is coming from. 

While this type of displacement behavior isn’t typically a problem, you should keep a close eye on your pooch while they are interacting with other dogs. Even if your pup doesn’t seem overly stressed out by the encounter, it’s best to stop the interaction while everyone is still friendly.  

6. Dental Problems

Dogs, like people, can develop painful dental problems that may cause teeth chattering. Gum disease, broken teeth, and cavities can be extremely painful, which can cause your dog’s teeth to rattle. 

It’s common for dogs with periodontal disease to have trouble chewing, eat less food, chew in strange ways, or take more time to eat their whole meal. If your dog suffers from dental pain, they may be reluctant to let you touch their face and mouth.

If your dog exhibits any of these symptoms or you suspect they’re suffering from dental problems, schedule an appointment with your vet as soon as possible. Dental issues can be extremely painful and no dog deserves to suffer from aching teeth.

While most dental problems in dogs can be treated, it’s best that you start treating them as soon as possible. Oral care work on a dog isn’t cheap, and you may end up spending a bucket full of money if your pooch needs oral surgery. 

The best thing you can do to prevent teeth chattering caused by painful dental problems is to check your dog’s teeth regularly. You should also brush your pup’s teeth, ideally every day or at least three times a week to maintain their oral health in peak condition. 

7. White Dog Shaker Syndrome

White dog shaker syndrome, also known as idiopathic steroid-responsive shaker syndrome, causes full-body tremors in small-breed dogs. Since this condition causes dogs to shake, it can also cause their teeth to chatter. 

The exact cause of this condition is still unknown, but it’s most commonly seen in West Highland white terriers, poodles, Malteses, and bichons. If, besides chattering teeth, your pooch has difficulty walking, involuntary eye movement, or seizures, take them to the vet right away.

8. Epilepsy

Epilepsy is the most common cause of seizures in dogs and can lead to teeth chattering and jaw clenching. Besides, seizure-induced teeth-chattering dogs suffering from epilepsy can also drool and foam at the mouth during a seizure. 

If your dog is experiencing any type of seizures, you should take them to your vet right away! Epilepsy is a serious condition, and your pooch will need lifelong treatment to lead a happy and normal life. 

9. Old Age

It’s not completely clear why older dogs chatter their teeth, but this type of behavior is more common in seniors than in puppies and adult dogs. If you have ruled out all other likely causes for your dog’s teeth chattering, it may simply be caused by old age.

Teeth chattering in senior dogs can affect pooches of any size and breed, so it’s safe to say that all geriatric dogs are at the same risk of exhibiting this behavior. 

If you notice that your senior pooch is chattering their teeth, the best thing you can do is observe them. Try to figure out if there is an underlying health problem or another reason that is causing your elderly dog to rattle their teeth.

In the end, the more you know about why your dog teeth are chattering, the more you’ll be able to help them.

To be on the safe side, take your senior pooch to the veterinarian for a full checkup. Your vet can run tests to rule out any serious medical problems. If there is no obvious cause for this behavior and your dog doesn’t seem like they are in pain, then you shouldn’t worry about the teeth chattering.

10. Pain

Teeth chattering can be your dog’s way of showing they are in pain. Unfortunately, most dogs will try to hide that they are in pain to avoid appearing weak, so by the time you notice something is wrong, your pooch will likely be in excruciating pain.

If, besides chattering their teeth, your dog appears agitated or stressed out all of a sudden, they may be experiencing pain somewhere in their body. In this case, a dog will rattle their teeth to communicate their discomfort or as a way to handle the unpleasant feeling. 

If you suspect that your pooch is in pain, take them to your veterinarian or emergency clinic right away. Pain can be a symptom of many different conditions, so your vet will most likely have to run several tests in order to diagnose the problem.

FAQs About Why Are My Dog’s Teeth Chattering

What Causes A Dog’s Teeth To Chatter?

Periodontal disease is the most common cause of teeth chattering in dogs. This extremely painful condition is the result of bacterial buildup, which causes gum inflammation and leads to deterioration of the teeth, bones, and surrounding tissues.

Furthermore, as the teeth start to lose the enamel, they become more sensitive, which can also cause chattering and grinding. 

What Is Chattering Teeth A Symptom Of?

Dogs chatter their teeth for a variety of different reasons. Some of the most common causes of teeth chattering in dogs are low body temperature, fear, anxiety, excitement, scent detection, and displacement behavior.

However, teeth chattering can also be a sign of a serious medical condition. Chattering teeth can be a symptom of dental disease, epilepsy, dog shaker syndrome, old age, or pain. Therefore, it’s important to observe your dog while they chatter their teeth and schedule an appointment with your vet to rule out any underlying health problems.

Why Does My Dog’s Jaw Quiver?

It’s not uncommon for a dog’s jaw to quiver when they are very excited, when they smell a female in heat, or when they find something interesting. Some dogs will chatter their teeth and quiver their jaw when they feel threatened, as a way to distract the other dog. 

Your dog’s jaw can also quiver if they are feeling cold or if they have a fever, so keep a close eye on your dog and keep them warm with a doggy sweater or a blanket. If you suspect that your pooch has a fever, take them to your vet for a checkup. 

Why Does My Dog Chatter His Teeth When He Smells Pee?

Dogs have powerful noses and are able to detect scents that people can’t register. Besides their powerful scent receptors, dogs also have a vomeronasal organ that allows them to taste the smell they are sniffing.

A dog will chatter their teeth while smelling another dog’s pee to get a better sniff and a better chance to analyze all scent molecules.

Dogs use pee as a form of communication, and your pooch can learn a lot about other dogs while sniffing their pee. Chattering their teeth while sniffing pee gives your pooch a wealth of information, including the age, sex, and reproductive status of the other dog.

Conclusion

By now, you have a better understanding of why dogs chatter their teeth and what you should do the next time your pooch starts to exhibit this quirky behavior. In most cases, teeth chattering is completely harmless and nothing to worry about, but sometimes it can be a symptom of an underlying health problem. The most common causes of dog teeth chattering are:

  • Odor detection
  • Periodontal disease
  • Fear, anxiety, and stress

If your pooch chatters their teeth from time to time, observe them carefully and try to figure out what is causing this behavior. If you ruled out all likely causes, err on the side of caution and take your dog to your vet for a full checkup. 

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Why Do Dogs Chatter Their Teeth? Understand What It Means - Closeup of older yellow Lab's teeth, mouth, nose, and muzzle.

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Why Do Dogs Chatter Their Teeth – Understand What It Means was last modified: March 22nd, 2021 by LTHQ

Source * www.labradortraininghq.com – * https://www.labradortraininghq.com/labrador-behavior/why-do-dogs-chatter-their-teeth/

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Dog Training and Behavior

Why Do Dogs Dig The Carpet

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This post may contain affiliate links. We may earn money or products from the companies mentioned in this post.

Digging the carpet might not make any sense to us humans, but it’s one of those things dogs love to do.

To be honest, my pooch looked hilarious the first time he scratched the carpet, but things stopped being funny when I discovered that he’d ripped the carpet fibers to shreds. If your pup is anything like mine, you’re probably wondering why in the world dogs dig at the carpet.

Hearing the sound your dog’s nails make while they are tearing into the carpet fibers may give you chills, but there are many reasons why dogs do this.

It may be as simple as your pooch trying to dig out a crumb of their favorite treat that got stuck between the fibers. Or they might just be trying to create a cozy spot for their afternoon nap.

By the time I figured out why my dog was digging the carpet in the first place, he had ditched the carpet for the bedding. Now, he is scratching the blankets and pulling the bedding left and right every night while my cat sleeps in the super cozy dog bed. 

This was just a preview of what your life might look like if you don’t figure out why your dog is digging the carpet and address the issue right away.

To help you get to the bottom of your dog’s digging problem, I’ll share all the reasons why dogs like to engage in this type of behavior. Continue reading if you’re fond of keeping your carpets the way they are!

Contents & Quick Navigation

Why Does My Dog Dig At The Carpet?

As I already mentioned, there are many explanations for this type of digging behavior. While your dog’s fascination with the carpet might seem random to you, there is a logic behind everything our canine companions do. So without further adieu, let’s dig into all the possible reasons for your dog’s carpet-digging obsession:

1. Digging Up Crumbs

Even if you like to keep your home tidy and have a powerful vacuum for pet hair, there is still a chance that you missed a few crumbs here and there. Thanks to their powerful sense of smell, dogs can sniff out a single crumb buried in the carpet fibers and will try to dig it out. 

If there is even the slightest chance that your carpet can serve as a buffet table to your pooch, don’t be surprised if they start digging and scratching at the carpet as if their life depends on it. If this seems to be a likely cause for your dog’s digging activities, take out your vacuum and clean the entire house thoroughly. 

While tedious, try to spend more time vacuuming your carpets and rugs to remove all food crumbs and any trace of dog treats and other goodies. If your dog stops digging the carpet after you’ve cleaned it, your problem is solved! 

To prevent future digging attempts, vacuum your carpet regularly and don’t let your dog chew and munch any treats on the floor. This way, you will minimize the risk of any specks getting stuck in between carpet fibers. 

2. Making A Cozy Sleeping Spot

Some dogs, mine included, like to set up their sleeping area by digging and turning around in circles before lying down for a nap. This type of behavior goes way back to when dogs lived in the wild and didn’t have cozy orthopedic dog beds.

In the wild, dogs had to make their sleeping area safe and comfortable by stomping grass and digging up the dirt, and rearranging the surface of the ground. 

Although our dogs are living in much cushier conditions now, and don’t actually need to rearrange their beds to make them more comfortable, this is a natural behavior and some dogs do it out of habit. Your own dog may dig the carpet for the exact same reason. 

If this is the reason for your dog’s carpet-digging behavior, you should get them a comfortable dog bed and encourage them to sleep in it.

And when you catch your dog digging the carpet, say “NO” and take them to their bed. Praise your dog and give them treats when they go in their bed instead of trying to dig the carpet and sleep on it. 

3. Enticing Smells

You know how some dogs, while outside, like to dig and then roll in a particularly smelly patch of grass or dirt? If your pooch is like this, they may also try to dig and scratch your carpet if they sniff a new and enticing smell. 

You might not even realize that your carpet smells any different, but dogs have extraordinary scent receptors and can smell things a mile away.

Let’s say you went outside or worked in your garden a bit and, as you came back home, you transferred a bit of soil to your carpet. Your dog’s keen nose sensed a new smell, and they are now compelled to dig into the carpet and investigate. 

If this sounds like the most likely reason why your dog digs the carpet, you’ll need a good carpet cleaner. Take a few minutes to locate the spots on the carpet that your pooch is most interested in and use the carpet cleaner to thoroughly scrub them of all smells.

Once the new and enticing odor is gone, your pooch won’t be so hell-bent on digging a hole through your carpet. 

4. Excitement

Sometimes dogs will dig and scratch the carpet frantically when they get extremely excited about something. 

To you, it may seem like your dog is taking it out on the carpet for no apparent reason, when in fact your pooch saw a bird or a squirrel in the yard. Your pooch may also sense another dog outside, but since they are not able to go out, they may release all the pent-up energy and excitement on your poor carpet. 

If your dog is easily excitable about seemingly random things, you’ll have to find ways to redirect their attention. To distract your dog from digging into the carpet, try playing with them or taking them for a walk.

If you are short on time, giving your dog puzzle toys or a stuffed Kong toy can be a great way to keep them occupied and less interested in destroying your carpet. 

5. Boredom

Dogs resort to all sorts of destructive behaviors out of boredom, and digging holes in your carpets can be just the thing that your dog finds the most entertaining. If your dog stays alone at home a lot or doesn’t have fun toys to play with, digging into the carpet can seem like the only way they can have fun while you aren’t around.

If you suspect that the lack of mental stimulation and exercise is causing your dog to tear into your carpet, provide suitable fun alternatives. If you work long hours, make sure your dog has access to a lot of different and fun toys they can play with while you aren’t around. 

You should also consider hiring a doggy walker who will take your dog out for a walk and a romp in the park. This way, your pooch will have a chance to release pent-up energy and be more interested in napping than destruction while you are at work. 

6. Separation Anxiety

Dogs with separation anxiety may start digging into the carpet to relieve their anxiety and stress when they are left alone. If your dog frequently digs the carpet and floor near the front door, chances are they are feeling anxious every time you leave the house. 

If you fail to notice the first signs of separation anxiety, your pooch may come to the point of tearing up your carpeting or creating scratch marks in your hard floors. Most dogs with separation anxiety resort to destructive behaviors to find comfort and to forget that their owners aren’t there in the first place. 

If separation anxiety is the reason why your dog is digging the carpet, you should make a plan and take steps to treat your dog’s anxiety. Bear in mind, curing your dog’s separation anxiety won’t happen overnight, and your dog may need professional help and medication.

No matter how long it takes and how hard it seems, take things one step at a time and be patient. 

7. Hiding Things

While any type of carpeting won’t be thick enough to hide anything from plain sight, your pooch may still attempt to dig into it to hide their valuable treasures. Burying items of value is an instinct for dogs, and your pooch may attempt to hide toys, treats, bones, or food for later use. 

The fact that nothing is really hidden or that you can clearly see your dog’s chew toy sticking out of the carpeting won’t deter your pooch from their efforts. If this is the reason for your dog’s digging, the only way to stop it is with training. 

The best way to train your dog to stop digging the carpet to hide things is by using positive reinforcement techniques.

So, whenever your dog seems like they want to bury the toy into the carpet, ask them to bring it back to you. Praise and play with your dog for a few minutes so they can see that bringing the toy back leads to rewards and positive results. 

8. Temperature Control

For dogs, digging is an innate behavior and something all of them do to some extent. This is mainly because dogs are descendants of wolves, which had to dig up dens that would shelter them and their offspring from harsh weather. 

If your dog is digging into the carpet, perhaps they are feeling too hot or cold, and are trying to regulate their body temperature. Digging a cozy den is just the thing their ancestors would do to cool down or stave off the cold. 

While most dogs will resort to digging holes in the dirt to control their temperature, when no dirt is available a carpet will do. too. If you think that your pooch is feeling too hot or too cold try to adjust the temperature in your home to make them feel more comfortable.

During the hot summer months, turn on the air conditioning and make sure your pup always has access to fresh, clean water. And during winter months or colder days, dress your dog in a sweater, get a heating pad, or add an extra blanket to their bed to keep them warm. 

9. Seeking Attention

If you responded to your dog’s previous carpet digging attempts, they know this is a sure way of getting your attention. If your pooch feels ignored and just wants to play with you, they may start digging into the carpet just to provoke a reaction.

Your dog knows that you’ll say something, or interact with them in some other way, and that is exactly what they want. So, if the long working hours and the busy schedule have kept you from interacting with your pooch as much as you’d like to, now is the time to make some time. 

Take your dog for a walk or a jog, play with them, or have a short training session to show them there is still time for them in your busy life. And to stop your dog from digging into the carpet, set out time every day to play, interact, and cuddle with your pup.

10. It’s A Breed Thing

While all dogs have an instinct to burrow, certain breeds were specifically bred to possess a strong urge to dig. Terrier breeds, for example, have been bred throughout the years to hunt, dig up, chase, and catch mice and other vermin living in the ground. 

If you catch your fox terrier in the act of digging out a hole in your carpet, know that they are doing the thing they were bred to do. In this case, there isn’t much you can do, except to ensure that your terrier is properly exercised and has plenty of toys that may help curb their digging urges.

FAQs About Your Dog Digs At The Carpet

Why Is My Dog Scratching At The Carpet?

There are many reasons why dogs dig the carpet. It might be that your dog is bored, too excited, trying to dig up food, setting up a cozy place to sleep, or suffering from separation anxiety.

The only way you will ever stop your dog from scratching your carpet and making holes in it, is by figuring out what is causing this type of destructive behavior. 

How Do I Stop My Dog From Digging Up The Carpet?

The best way to stop your dog from digging into your carpet is to clap your hands or make some noise when you catch your pooch in the act. But don’t yell or do anything that will startle your dog, since this will be completely counter-productive. 

Once you have your dog’s attention, try to redirect their behavior by asking them to do some simple task. Tell your dog to “sit,” “lie down,” or “give paw,” and reward them whenever they perform well. 

Why Do Dogs Dig At The Carpet Before Lying Down?

Some dogs dig at the carpet before lying down to set up their sleeping area and make it more comfortable. Scratching the carpet before lying down can also help dogs find the best and most comfortable sleeping position.

Digging into the carpet is an innate behavior for dogs, since it gives them a feel of burrowing into a cozy den, just like their ancestors did while living outdoors. 

Why Does My Dog Scratch The Carpet In The Middle Of The Night?

The main reason why dogs scratch the carpet or bedding in the middle of the night is because of their inherited burrowing instinct.

Dogs want to feel comfortable and safe while they sleep, so they will scratch and dig the carpet to create a comfortable sleeping area for the night. Some dogs will also turn around in circles for a few moments before settling down for a good night’s rest.

Conclusion

Knowing why dogs dig the carpet can help you curb this undesired behavior and also save your carpeting before it becomes threadbare or riddled with holes. Digging is an instinct for all dogs, but most start scratching or digging into the carpet for one of several reasons. Some of the most common causes of indoor digging in dogs include:

  • Setting up a sleeping area
  • Boredom and separation anxiety
  • Hiding food, toys, and treats

Figuring out what is causing your dog to sink their nails and dig into your carpet frantically is the best and the only way you’ll be able to stop this behavior once and for all. Keep in mind that some dog breeds were bred to burrow and dig, and they may have a stronger urge to scratch your carpet.

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Why Does My Dog Dig The Carpet? - How To Stop Indoor Digging - Yellow Lab puppy digging carpet next to pee spot

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Why Do Dogs Dig The Carpet – How To Stop Indoor Digging? was last modified: March 23rd, 2021 by LTHQ

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Dog Training and Behavior

CESAR MILLAN TEACHES YOU HOW TO USE THE LEASH!

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In this episode, I teach you how to use one of the most important tools you have as a pet parent, the leash!

The leash is a tool you can use to CONNECT, GUIDE, and STOP your dog. It is important to pay attention to the energy of your dog and yourself. Remember to always use calm, confident, love and joy energy and that dogs communicate by nose, eyes, and ears.

It should be as easy as a boat in the water.

I use different dogs of different breeds and sizes to show you that this is universal.

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Timecodes:
00:18 – What is the leash?
00:34 – Different type of tools you have as a Pet Parents
01:00 – How to Use the Leash and What You Need!
01:26 – How to Put the Leash on! (Using Different Sizes / Breeds of Dogs)
05:46 – Why is the state of mind your dog is in so important?
06:46 – Where to put the leash on your dog!

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