Why Do Dogs Suck On Blankets?
They Go Back To Their Puppyhood
Dogs tend to suck on blankets, even when they are well into adult-hood. This craving supports animal psychology, which states that dogs associate the texture of their blanket with the feeling of nursing. The blanket's texture is like the mother dog's skin and fur as a young pup.
While most adult dogs tend to behave or act one way or another, it is scientifically proven that bad behavior such as sucking in adult dogs can be traced back to their early age in infancy.
Source: American Kennel Club
They Have Anxiety
Anxiety could be what's led to dogs sucking blankets. Dogs usually begin this habit due to something that causes them anxiety or because of stressful times in their lives. You might notice certain things that make your dog anxious, including the presence of certain people, when you take it on its leash out to walk with you or if loud noises are coming from outside.
You can help counteract and lessen your puppy's anxiety by teaching it some new skills like loose-leash walking. Therefore, they associate things they may have previously been afraid of with good things, such as getting to play fetch or exploring a new trail.
The Smell The Owner's Scent
A dog tends to pick up on its owner's scent and will then use this blanket as a tool for relieving anxiety. Dogs frequently prefer to sleep in a corner or under a blanket. The use of blankets by dogs is also similar to how they line their nests while sleeping. Therefore, it is likely that your pet has a strong scent on it.
This would be even more probable if your dog becomes anxious when you go out and returns home after several hours. If this is the case, the smell of your blankets on your pets will increase with time because of the frequent contact between them.
They Think It Is A Good Behavior
Your dog sucks its blanket could have something to do with how much you reward it when it does suck on them. This depends on what sort of behavior you're feeding if you tend to give it attention, treats, or toys due to this type of playful behavior.
However, rather than giving in to the temptation to do so, it may help make your pet work for its keep by redirecting its focus before it feels like indulging in its favorite pastime.
They Are Teething
One of the most common causes for dogs to start sucking blankets, pillows, and other fabrics is teething and needing something soft in their mouths. Some dogs chew on blankets to help them get through the teething stages, particularly if they are puppies.
It is important for pet owners in these situations to intervene by making sure their dog has lots of other things to chew on and plenty of positive reinforcement training to understand what behaviors are acceptable.
They Enjoy The Taste
Dogs tend to enjoy the taste of blankets. They often lick and suck on them, leading to a build-up of dead skin cells, oils, and salt derived from their sweat. If your dog appears to enjoy sucking on blankets more than other objects, that flavor may be particularly satisfying.
Source: Doberman Forum
How To Stop Dogs From Sucking On Blankets
After knowing the reasons why dogs suck on blankets, here are some solutions to avoid this behavior.
Give Them Dog Toys
Sometimes, all you need is a simple distraction when trying to stop a dog from chewing on the blanket. You can give it something else to chew on that is better for it. This can be done by giving the dog some bones, puzzle games, or toys!
Adjust Their Diet
Dogs chewing blankets could be a sign of something wrong with your diet. They will be more likely to chew objects like doggy beds or blankets if they don't get the right food. As a pet owner, you should also examine whether or not your dog's dietary needs are being met.
When a dog bites a blanket or other soft surfaces, that is due to the lack of vitamins and minerals. This would be more likely to happen if your pet starts this behavior after switching to a new food brand. By researching these foods, you can make sure to keep both your pet and family safe!
Source: Wikimedia Commons
Stop Encourage Them
Rewarding and training your dog is essential. It is important to reward it when it stops sucking on blankets and reward it again if it continues not to suck on them. Dogs are very easygoing, so you should try redirecting their focus before going back to blanketing mode!
If the blanket-sucking problem persists, you may want to try trying to distract your dog with a new toy instead of the blanket.
Relax And Reduce Stress
In case your dog has been an apparent blanket-sucker, it would also help if you could reduce anything that makes it anxious when you are away. Try to feed your pet before you leave and let him/her outside to water before taking it out for a ride.
Check up on the pup every once while you are gone to see if they have any new toys or treats or just care and affection.
Take Them To A Vet
When your pet starts sucking blankets excessively, this might be a sign of an underlying health problem. It could potentially be something as simple as teething, but that is why it is best to take them to a vet and have them eliminate more serious causes for concern.
Dogs love to suck on things, and blankets are no exception! If you have a dog and wonder why they are sucking on something, it is likely a habit that has developed.
We hope this article helps you understand why do dogs suck on blankets. If you have any further questions about this topic, don't hesitate to contact us anytime. Thanks for reading!