Whether rolls of toilet paper, newspapers lying around or your mail - your dog just loves to shred paper? Learn here why dogs like to shred paper and what you can do about it.
It is usually normal for dogs to dissect paper and handkerchiefs. It may, for example, be curiosity or instinct behind it. But still you should keep an eye on this behavior. It can also be a sign of boredom or stress. And if your dog eats the paper, it can even be dangerous for him.
Paper shredder as an instinctive dog behavior
Even in the most gentle pet dog is still a predator. This means that every dog instinctively tries to "kill" found prey. The paper or the handkerchiefs fished out of the dustbin are, so to speak, his prey for the four-legged friend - and he shakes and bites until he is "killed".
In addition, dogs are curious by nature. Mail coming from outside, used paper handkerchiefs or your daily smell interesting for your dog. When packing leftovers from the wastebasket, food scraps or food scents may also have stuck to the paper. Sometimes dogs simply can not resist and fish the trash out of the bin - and then take on the instinctive prey behavior.
Pregnant bitches or bitches with pseudo-pregnancy sometimes rip up paper or cloth to make a nest for themselves and their puppies. This is often accompanied by burrowing and pawing paw movements on the couch or other places.
Some dog breeds are said to be particularly susceptible to shredding paper, including:
● Golden Retrievers
● Cairn Terrier
But in principle, every dog can enjoy shredding paper.
When dogs shred paper out of boredom
As soon as you let your dog out of sight for a few minutes, is not there any more paper in front of him? It is possible that he gets bored and chases away time with paper shredding. Since he also uses his instinctive predator behavior, the shredding of handkerchiefs, newspapers and Co. has a rewarding effect on him as well.
Attention as motivation for the four-legged "shredder"
In addition, you may have accidentally amplified the unwanted behavior. Dogs usually love attention and do not distinguish between praise and blame. So, if you scold your dog for tearing paper, reward it with attention - and then your dog will see no reason to stop shredding paper.
Stress as a possible reason for the paper fight
Paper shredding not only has a rewarding effect on dogs, it also has a calming effect. Some dogs try to vent on paper lying around when they feel anxious or stressed.
Has there been any change in your household lately? This can also be small things, such as a new detergent that smells different than the usual product. Or you are stressed out and confuse your four-legged friend with it unconsciously.
The shredding of paper in this case is a so-called skip action for dogs. It is a seemingly out-of-context behavior that shows animals and humans when they feel an internal conflict that they can not solve in the situation. For example, people chew on their nails or clean their glasses, even though it is not dirty. Dogs then like to rip up paper.
Dog eats paper - is that dangerous?
While it is not necessarily dangerous for your dog to shred paper. But if he eats the paper, he may get digestive problems. With luck, your dog simply exterminates or vomits the paper that has been eaten.
But it can also happen that the paper clogs the intestine and even causes an intestinal obstruction in an emergency. This must then be repaired as soon as possible surgically, otherwise there is danger to life.
Also, take care when the paper contains potentially toxic substances, such as cleaning or disinfecting wipes. As an emergency measure, you can give your dog coal tablets. Then you should go immediately with him to the vet or in the veterinary clinic and best take the packaging of the wet wipes - so the doctor knows which toxin he has to do it.
How to stop your dog from tearing paper
It's best to make sure your dog can not get hold of paper that easily. For example, use only recycle bins with lids and keep handkerchiefs and kitchen rolls out of reach.
Also, do not leave your newspaper or magazines lying around on the coffee table, but also put them down where your dog can not get to. The bathroom door should also always be kept closed so that your four-legged friend does not take a stake on the toilet paper roll.
At the same time you should also offer your dog alternatives, so that he can still follow his instincts. Otherwise, it may happen that your dog does not tear paper anymore, but disassembles your shoes or your furniture.
A kong that you fill with treats, for example, busy your dog and gives him pleasure. A chewing bone, a piece of dried rawhide or hard rubber toys also serve this purpose.