Dog Biting Shoes: Understanding and Managing This Common Behavior

As much as we love our furry companions, there’s no denying that they can have some frustrating habits. One of the most common of these is biting shoes. Not only can this be destructive and costly, but it’s also a safety hazard if your dog chews on shoes with small parts or toxic materials. In this article, we’ll delve into the reasons behind this behavior and explore some tips for preventing and managing it.

Why Do Dogs Bite Shoes?

Before we can address the issue of shoe-biting, it’s important to understand why dogs do it in the first place. There are several potential reasons:


Just like human babies, puppies go through a teething phase where their teeth are growing and causing discomfort. Chewing on something hard like a shoe can provide relief. However, this behavior should disappear once the adult teeth come in.

Dog Biting Shoes: Understanding and Managing This Common BehaviorSource:

Boredom or Anxiety

If your dog is left alone for long periods of time or doesn’t get enough exercise and mental stimulation, he may turn to destructive behaviors like shoe-biting out of boredom or anxiety.

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Taste or Smell

Sometimes, dogs simply enjoy the taste or smell of shoes. This can be especially true if the shoes have been worn and have picked up the scent of their owner.

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Preventing Shoe-Biting

While it’s difficult to completely eliminate a dog’s desire to chew on shoes, there are several steps you can take to minimize the chances of it happening:

Provide Plenty of Toys and Chews

Make sure your dog has access to plenty of toys and chews that are safe and appropriate for his age and size. This can satisfy his urge to chew without resorting to shoes.

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Keep Shoes Out of Reach

When you’re not wearing your shoes, make sure they’re stored securely out of your dog’s reach. Consider keeping them in a closed closet or in a designated shoe rack.

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Provide Plenty of Exercise and Mental Stimulation

Make sure your dog is getting enough exercise and mental stimulation to keep him from getting bored or anxious. Take him for walks, play games with him, and provide puzzles or other interactive toys.

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Managing Shoe-Biting

If your dog does end up biting a shoe, it’s important to handle the situation correctly:

Don’t Punish Your Dog

While it may be frustrating to see your favorite shoes destroyed, punishing your dog won’t prevent the behavior from happening again. It may even make him more anxious and prone to destructive behaviors.

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Redirect His Attention

If you catch your dog in the act of biting a shoe, calmly redirect his attention to a toy or chew that’s more appropriate. Praise him when he switches his focus.

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Use a Deterrent Spray

There are sprays available that can be applied to shoes to make them less appealing to dogs. However, make sure to choose a product that’s safe for both your dog and your shoes.

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While dog biting shoes can be a frustrating behavior, it’s important to approach it with patience and understanding. By providing plenty of appropriate toys and chews, keeping shoes out of reach, and providing enough exercise and mental stimulation, you can minimize the chances of it happening. And if it does happen, remember to redirect your dog’s attention and avoid punishing him.

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Van Hellen

Being a dog parent has never felt this good. Here at Wheaten Dogs, finding the best essentials for your dog is our top concern. My mission is to provide information and latest updates, especially about best dog products, to dog owners and lovers alike.

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