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Why We Need to Give Our Dogs Opportunities to Chew!

Chewing is a natural behaviour for dogs, but most dogs don’t get enough opportunities to chew or chew things they shouldn’t!

This blog will explain why we need to fulfil this natural need for our dogs and easy ways to do it…

Why Dogs Chew

Chewing is a natural instinct for dogs. It’s how they explore the world, how they teeth and how they keep their teeth clean.

Benefits of chewing include:

  • Improves dental health

  • Alleviates boredom

  • Provides mental stimulation

  • Release endorphins

  • Naturally calming behaviour

Giving our dogs opportunities to chew can help reduce behaviour problems too! A dog who is not bored and has had the mental stimulation chewing provides will be less likely to perform attention-seeking behaviours, will be calmer, and will be more tired and relaxed.

Easy Chewing Opportunities

There are so many products out there which people think will be good for their dogs. Here is a list of safe things for our dogs, as well as things to avoid.


  • Rawhide.

    • Rawhide is highly processed and can be dangerous for our dogs.

  • Sticks.

    • One of my clients is a vet and she told me she sees loads of dogs every day with injuries caused by dogs chewing sticks.

  • Things you don’t want your dog to chew.

    • For example, if you don’t want your dog to chew shoes, don’t allow them to! Keep shoes out of your dog’s reach and don’t give them old shoes to chew on either.

    • If your dog is chewing things they shouldn’t, providing them with good alternatives that they are allowed to chew will help. Remember to reward them for chewing the right things!

Safe Chews:

  • Natural Chews

    • Look for natural chews with their ingredients clearly labelled.

  • Olive sticks.

    • These are a much safer than sticks because they don’t splinter.

  • Chew toys, such as Nylabone or Kong.

    • Make sure your chew toy is durable and not too small for your dog.

Chewing is such an important activity for our dogs so we need to give them opportunities to do it!

How can you give your dog more safe chewing opportunities?


You can find plenty of natural chews at the Rosy Paws Shop.

And if you follow me on social media (@rosypawsedinburgh), you will be the first to know about any special offers and giveaways!


Links and References

Arhant, C., Winkelmann, R. and Troxler, J., 2021. Chewing behaviour in dogs–A survey-based exploratory study. Applied Animal Behaviour Science, 241, p.105372.

Bjone, S., Brown, W., Billingham, J., Harris, A. and McGenity, P., 2005, May. Influence of chewing on dental health in dogs. In Annual Australian Veterinary Association Conference (pp. 16-19).

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