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Archived Message

chewing rug

by Rosemarie Repetto

I have a 1 1/2 year old female Maltese named Tiffany. The last couple of days she has started a new habit. Everytime we leave the house (we leave her and my Toy Poodle gated in our large kitchen area), she starts to chew up the kitchen rug. She has never destroyed anything in our house before. She has plenty of toys and my poodle to play with, and as a puppy, she never touched that rug! I have scolded her everytime we came home and found the rug chewed up, but it dosen't seem to do any good! I don't know if I should crate her when we go out or take the rug up! Please, if anyone has had this problem, or can offer any advice, it would be much appreciated!


Please bear in mind when reading topics pertaining to health issues, that many of these questions were answered by helpful Maltese owners with no formal education in veterinarian medicine. When in doubt seek a professionals advise.

Rosemary, Try some bitter apple spray on the rug. If that doesn't work I would take it up seems as though there is something she likes about that particular rug maybe a diffrent one in its place might stop the behavior.

Rosemary, when I read your question, I wondered how you knew for sure that it was your Maltese and not the poodle, but I am sure you probably do know. How is that for being defensive of our little sweeties? The other thing that crossed my mind was that you might read through some of the separation anxiety discussions in the archives, and there is one on the main directory, also.Maybe that could be part of what is going on with the chewing,you'll just have to see if the information seems to "fit".Good luck!

Rosemarie, I am the author of "My Poor Wall", and I think Veronica had some great suggestions for me. My little one is only 7 months old, but she ruined our rug by our front door out of the blue, and when we bought another, she started in on it, too. We've always been with her all day long (and although it is probably a no no, she has slept with us since the day we brought her home). Although we had left her for a few hours a couple of times before the wall incident, I think in our case it is because she is a puppy, and she doesn't know that chewing rugs, walls, etc. isn't the thing to do. We now crate her when we are gone for her safety, which she is slowly accepting. It's new for us, since we have never had an animal act like this, but then again, we have never had a dog with so much personality--and one that we missed constantly when we were on vacation! She's our angel, and I guess she looks to us to keep her safe while she learns what she is and isn't supposed to do. One other tiny note: we had another breed of small dog growing up, and she was a terrific dog. But she did get upset when we left her all day (sometimes) and would get into the garbage and drag it all over the house. I really think they are upset at the owner--a combination of being smart and bored. I'll be anxious to see what others say. Good luck!

I live in the home of 6 champion rug chewers/shredders. They ate every rug I had in the house. They scratch, shredding them, chew them, throw them around the room. It is amazing what these little fur balls can do in a group effort. In purchasing other rugs, I found some that they do not tear up. They are flat rugs with no pile or fluff. They have been down now for two months and just seem to be no fun at all, so they are in tact. These dogs are also great wall chewers. My sister swears that it is lack of calcium in their diet, but the vet said no when he checked their levels. I found that the one thing they do not like is mentholatum. I put it on the wall they love to chew and they do not even go near it anymore.
-Marsha A

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