Perhaps your Bernese Mountain Dog has started destroying your favorite shoes, books, or furniture and continues to do so without stopping!
We outline the reasons why your Bernese Mountain Dog has destructive behavior and what to do about it to stop the problem.
Why does my Bernese Mountain Dog destroy everything?
A Bernese Mountain Dog destroys everything due to various reasons including boredom, stress, anxiety, puppy teething, fear, or inadequate training. It is important to determine the exact cause of a Bernese Mountain Dog’s destructive behavior to apply the appropriate action to stop the problem.
Reasons Why Your Bernese Mountain Dog Destroys Everything
Destructive behavior is a common canine behavioral problem that includes chewing items in the home.
Chewing is a natural instinct-driven behavior of both puppies and adult dogs but without regulation and control, it leads to Bernese Mountain Dog destructive chewing.
For sure dogs do not intentionally do this but are driven to this behavior. The first step is to determine the specific cause of destructive behavior to implement the appropriate method to teach your dog against this behavior.
Below are the reasons why your Bernese Mountain Dog displays this behavior.
Bernese Mountain Dogs get bored easily especially when they’re not engaged physically or mentally. To entertain themselves, they direct their attention to items in the home that they can chew on or play with.
The Bernese Mountain Dog is a high-energy dog that needs to expand its energy in activities and plenty of exercises and when not provided with adequate outlets of energy, they get bored and result in directing the energy on chewing which is fun.
This behavior is also seen when a Bernese Mountain Dog is left alone and does not have anything to engage it.
If your Bernese Mountain Dog is a puppy, expect chewing behavior. It is normal dog behavior and this will be frequent, especially for a puppy during teething which occurs between 3 to 4 months of age.
They do this to ease the discomfort and pain they feel when they are teething. They will find anything on-site to chew on.
By understanding the stage of development of their dog you can put the appropriate measures to help your pup during this growth stage.
As a dog owner, your Bernese Mountain Dog will be highly attached to you and they will want to be close to you all of the time.
However, realistically you cannot be with them all the time and whenever you leave your home your dog will certainly feel separation anxiety because you’ll be away from them.
They become anxious and stressed which is displayed by excessive barking, constant pacing, scratching on doors, and chewing on items so that they can cope.
It is important to always calm down and teach your dog how to be ok while you are away which will also prevent destructive behavior.
A Bernese Mountain Dog can also become anxious and destructive when his or her environment changes like moving to a new home, change of items in the home, or when a new pet is introduced.
Dogs will naturally and instinctively be compelled to chew on things and without control, this can result in the destruction of your home.
Your Bernese Mountain Dog needs to be taught appropriate behavior, for example, what to touch and what not to touch.
This is primarily done through dog-training to discourage any inappropriate destructive behavior.
You can teach him or her items that are off-limits and show items that they can direct their attention to such as their toys.
Train them on anti-chew commands which will assist in helping them understand this. Remember to use positive reinforcement by giving praise or treats to assure them that they are doing well.
This will encourage them and enforce good behavior. If you also need help in teaching good behavior, you can also seek assistance from a dog trainer that can help you in the process.
Sometimes destructive behavior is a call for attention from your dog.
Your Bernese Mountain Dog may just want to spend more time with you and to communicate that they may turn to destruction things they know you will have to address by directing attention to them.
Identify if this is the reason for the behavior to rectify it.
Bernese Mountain Dogs can also be afraid of very loud noises such as fireworks or thunderstorms. To hide or run away from this perceived danger, your Bernese Mountain Dog may scratch on walls or doors in an attempt to escape and protect themselves.
Identify if this is the cause of destructive behavior to apply the appropriate method to calm them down.
Destructive Behavior: What To Do About It
Provide Adequate Exercise
Plenty of exercises can help in alleviating boredom in your Bernese Mountain Dog and help him or her use their excess energy. This will greatly reduce destructive behavior as a result of boredom.
Whenever you are going to be away from your Bernese Mountain Dog either when you are at work or away from your home for some hours, ensure that you exercise them with a simple walk or if you can’t have someone else take them for a walk.
Also, play with them regularly so that they can use their energy. In cases where you simply cannot, you can take them to a dog daycare where they will be engaged in activities.
Providing toys such as chew toys to Bernese Mountain Dog puppies or an adult dog will minimize the destruction of items in your home.
Puppies will be able to ease their teething discomfort with toys while the adult Bernese Mountain Dog will be able to enjoy his chew sessions and jaw-stretching moments with an item they are allowed to use.
You can also use these toys in the training sessions to show your dog what items are ok to chew on and what are off-limits.
This will help your Bernese Mountain Dog distinguish what is not allowed and toys that they can chew on.
Dog Proof Your Home And Supervise Your Dog
Minimize access to items within your home that your dog can damage. For example, prevent access to certain rooms or use indoor dog gates to restrict movement to areas not accessible.
This will prevent your dog from reaching things that they may chew on or destroy. Also, whenever your dog is in the house, supervise them to see what they are up to.
Keeping watch will allow you to be aware of inappropriate behavior when it happens and be able to correct and teach them not to do it again.
You can also engage a professional animal behaviorist to assist you in the process of training your Bernese Mountain Dog against destructive behavior.
Teaching your dog boundaries consisting of items in your home that they should not touch is important to regulate and control the behavior.
Containment By Use Of A Crate
One way of preventing destruction in your home is to contain your puppy or adult Bernese Mountain Dog in a crate especially when you are away from them.
This will limit them from accessing items in the home that they would get a chance to damage. Also, provide them their favorite toys in the crate so that they will be kept busy playing with the toy.
Use Chew Deterrent On Items
To prevent your Bernese Mountain Dog from chewing on items in your house, you can use a safe bitter solution sprayed on the items to discourage your dog from chewing and destroying them.
A simple mixture of apple cider vinegar and water sprayed on furniture legs or other items acts as a deterrent.
When your Bernese Mountain Dog tastes this when he or she begins to chew on an item the bitter taste of the vinegar will deter them from continuing to chew.
This will prevent further destruction of the item.
Destructive behavior is a common behavior problem. It is important to know the causes of this behavior to know the right action to take to tame the habit.
Remember to be patient with your dog because even the most trained Bernese Mountain Dogs can have slip-ups where they damage items.
Do not punish your Bernese Mountain Dog because this will only increase their anxiety and stress which will negatively impact them.
By following the different methods for stopping the behavior, you should be able to curb this behavior and prevent the destruction of valuable items in your home.