When your puppy is 3 to 4 months old, they will lose their baby teeth and new, permanent teeth will begin to emerge. As you might imagine, this process can cause swelling, redness, and irritation, and your puppy will seek out ways to soothe the pain. The most common behavior? Chewing, and not always on items that are appropriate.
There are plenty of stories of pups chomping on shoes, gnawing the sofa, and nibbling on the molding, but fortunately, there are things you can do to help soothe your pal’s pain and protect your belongings in the process.
1. Provide One or Two Appropriate Chews
If you don’t give your pup something to chew on, they will find something to chew on. Instead of leaving your buddy to their own devices, offer them a chew or two — and only a chew or two. If you offer your puppy too many options, it will make it difficult for them to distinguish between what is appropriate to chew on around the house and what isn’t. You can entice your puppy to chew their new toys by smearing a bit of peanut butter on them. And remember to supervise your puppy when they are chewing, especially if they are munching on something like a bully stick or rawhide that can break into small pieces.
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2. Freeze To Ease
Frozen items help to soothe teething mouths by numbing sore gums and reducing inflammation. Offer your puppy an ice cube, wet down a rag, twist it into a knot, and freeze it to create a satisfying toy, or freeze a carrot and let the your pal munch on it. Carrots are rich in Vitamin A and Potassium and make a great snack, but because they are also high in fiber, you should feed them in moderation to avoid an upset stomach.
3. Puppy-Proof Your House
Even if you offer your pup lots of safe and healthy chews, they may occasionally still look for other things to nibble on. Puppy-proof your house to make sure that they won’t ingest anything harmful, such as poisonous foods or loose items on tables or shelves. You should also hide electrical cords, which if chewed on could be fatal. If you want to teach your puppy not to chew on something in particular, consider purchasing some Bitter Apple Spray. Bitter Apple Spray is a non-toxic, odorless formula that can be sprayed directly onto furniture or items that your pup is likely to go after. The taste is terrible to a dog, so chances are they won’t go back for a second bite.
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4. Monitor Your Pup’s Teeth
Teething usually lasts a few weeks to a month (you’ll get through it!), and you should keep an eye on your pup’s teeth and take them for a vet visit during the process to ensure that all of the new teeth are coming in appropriately. Retained deciduous teeth can cause problems down the road, and it is better to catch the issue early than face the medical and financial consequences later.
How do you help your puppy with teething? Leave a comment and let us know, and consider signing up for PetPlus to save on your pet’s medications, supplies, boarding, and more.