The Shredding Stops Here

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If your dog bawls its eyes out during “The Notebook” or has terrible allergies, maybe letting them blow their nose with a Kleenex or two is not a bad thing. However, most dogs do not go through boxes of tissues or rolls of toilet paper like humans do – in fact, leaving a pooch alone in the house with access to the bathroom, or the wastebasket, can warrant a nasty result: chewed, ripped up pieces of toilet and tissue paper everywhere! Luckily, this is a normal behavior, whether your pup is young or old. It is your job as their owner to correct this behavior early on, so that you can trust your pooch to be alone for a few hours.

Allowing your furry friend to chew up a cardboard roll is not a bad thing, but all that toilet tissue, and your money, can go to waste if it’s within their reach. Besides maintaining control of your home through cleanliness, being fiscally responsible for your pooch and your abode is also a huge concern. Not to mention all that paper can actually cause tummy aches and even blockage to your buddy’s digestive tract, so why take that risk? Using these provided solutions will help usher you and your dog into a nirvana of waste free floors and peaceful housekeeping.

A key word in training is management. If humans themselves can manage their jobs, wallet, kids, and in-laws, getting your pup out of the trash and managing the environment can prove supremely efficient. Keeping the Puffs Plus on a high shelf, closing the bathroom door and hiding the wastebasket are all positive changes that can alter your dog’s behaviors. Try to put toys outside of the bathroom or near the garbage instead, so that your pooch goes for the better choice rather than making a huge mess.

Now, you can’t go hiding the toilet paper forever or else someone going to wwho’d like to use your facilities may be unhappy playing hide-and-seek. Teaching your dog to stay away from paper is essential to correcting their behavior. Otherwise, once a tissue box or roll is in sight, only time will tell before your floorboards turn into a winter wonderland of paper. Management is great for when you are away from your dog, but practicing when you are in the house reinforces the idea that the paper shredding needs to stop.

Supervise the dog on a free day, perhaps a weekend, and purposely leave a roll somewhere obvious so that they can get at it. Here is where the command “leave it” comes into play, and can be used in a variety of instances. In order to have your dog recognize the negativity associated with the item, place the tissue paper in your open hand. Once you dog reaches for it, use the command “leave it” and close the palm of your hand. It may take a while for them to understand this, so repetition is very important. Be patient: once they show a sign of defeat and give up, reward them with a treat or toy. You must do this several times before the action is learned, so stock up on good incentives for each time this behavior is demonstrated.

Once the action is learned from your hand, place the tissue on the floor. If your dog feels compelled to move towards it, use the command “leave it” then step on the tissue with your foot. Show acclimation towards your pup for leaving the tissue alone. Again, repetition is a must for correcting this behavior. If your dog is obeying “leave it,” you can try the same technique, but do not cover the tissue with your foot. Eventually, your dog will learn to leave paper alone on the floor, and you should reward them as such each time they ignore the tissues.

One piece of tissue is obviously a lot smaller than an entire roll, but the “leave it” command should suffice for the difficulties ahead. Whether you roll out a toilet paper trail, put tissues everywhere, or knock over a wastebasket, your pup will become accustomed to your commands. The ultimate training technique will require you to place a roll or piece of toilet paper at a distance, out of sight from your pup. If they approach it, command them to “leave it,” and if they obey, reward them. This reinforces the idea that touching the toilet paper when you are not around is not okay, and they will learn soon enough that a treat or toy is in the making if they follow your rules.

Training in any instance is extremely important to a dog’s well being and mental state – leaving anybody alone for prolonged periods of time can drive them up a wall. So best practices aside, always keep tissues out of sight, as temptation can get the best of any bored pooch. Reinforcing this behavior with tissues also works on other objects your dog can get into, so always practice this technique. Fortunately, the best way to keep your dog out of the trash, and out of trouble, is to regularly walk and exercise your dog. Mental stimulation relieves even the most well-trained dogs, and the benefits of regular exercise are far more positive than a house full of ripped up tissue.

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