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Category Archives: Dog Behavior

Dec
17
2012

Most tail chewing in dogs is nothing to worry about but when a dog chews his tail until he loses his hair and starts to look raw, you do have an issue that you are going to need to address quickly because lots of chewing can cause permanent damage to the tail.

Dog chewing problems are driven by either medical, behavioural or environmental issues so take some time to see what might be having an affect on your dog before you start to treat it.

Medical Problems

Itching due to a irritated skin or allergy may lead to the dog chewing until they break the skin, creating the chance of an infection in the area. Watch out for ‘hot spots ‘ on your dogs tail, and talk with your vet for either topical treatments or antibiotics to clear it up.

Intestinal worms can be irritating to your dog’s anal area and cause your dog to chew his tail close to the base. Treat with dog dewormer treatments which are easily available.

Diet allergies are also known for causing excessive chewing, so a change to their diet like feeding them hypoallergenic food could eliminate the problem.

Environmental Issues

Substances and items your dog is exposed to indoors and out of doors could cause chewing too. Check your dog’s tail for parasites like ticks or fleas, and if they are seen your veterinarian will suggest products to eliminate these bugs. If fleas are the cause, ensure you treat other pets, your dog’s bedding, plus your place to stop reinfestation.

Pollens, grasses, dust mites, mold, insecticides, soap, fabrics or toxic chemicals could be affecting your dog, so observe what they come into regular contact with and if feasible try removing that item for some time to see if it makes a difference to the chewing.

Dog Behavioural Issues

Dog tail chewing can be a sign of attention seeking or anxiety.

Attention seeking behavior is not very difficult to cope with and the best way to stop it is to simply ignore your dog when they chew. Do not look at them, talk to them or touch them in any fashion and even get up and walk away out of sight as soon as they begin to chew. They should soon learn that their behavior does not work and give it up.

Separation anxiety in dogs is another reason for tail chewing and will take place when they’re left all alone. Kind of like an individual might chew their nails when they were feeling anxious, dogs can chew on their paws or tail. This is because the activity of chewing releases a natural endorphin that helps to calm the system down.

Coping with the difficulties of separation anxiety in dogs will need a good program of dog separation anxiety training and lots of patience, and in extreme cases may need help from some anti anxiety medication.

Stop Your Dog Chewing His Tail Today

A lamp shade collar will immediately stop your dog accessing the area they’re chewing on, similarly some dog lovers find that using bitter tasting sprays on the areas will stop the chewing. But these measures can only be used temporarily while you identify the cause and treat it so that the problem goes away completely.

Author, Venice Marriott is a writer, dog lover and owner of the Dog Anxiety website, providing help and information for anyone dealing with dog anxiety. Get more details about your dog dog chewing his tail, when you visit the site.