When your puppy is teething it can be a stressful time for both you and your pup. Here, our Des Moines vets offer some tips and tricks on how you help your puppy feel better during this time.
Similar to human babies, puppies go through a teething phase where they bite and chew on objects to alleviate the discomfort and pain. This can be a challenging time as you try to ease their discomfort while also safeguarding your furniture. However, there are a few actions you can take to assist them during this period.
When do puppies start teething?
There are variations in timeline depending on your puppy's breed, but typically puppies get their first set of teeth at about 5 - 6 weeks of age. Then, at around 16 weeks old your pup will begin to lose their baby teeth and their adult teeth will begin to appear.
How long do puppies teethe?
By the time your dog reaches around 6 to 7 months old, they should have all their adult teeth, and the teething phase should be over.
However, those 4 to 5 months of intense teething can be quite challenging for many pet owners. Puppies in search of relief from the discomfort often resort to chewing on various objects, including furniture legs, expensive shoes, and even your fingers or toes due to their small size.
So, how can you alleviate your furry friend's discomfort while safeguarding your valuable belongings? Here are a few recommendations from our veterinary team at Des Moines Veterinary Hospital.
How can I help my teething puppy?
Store Some Puppy Friendly Teething Toys in the Freezer
Much like teething babies, puppies often find that chewing cold or frozen items help to relieve teething pain. While there is a range of teething-specific toys available from most pet stores almost any dog toy can be frozen to help provide relief for your pup. Kongs, rubber bones, and dog-specific soft toys are all great options.
Offer Your Pup Extra Durable Chew Toys
Puppy teething bones from brands like Nylabone are designed in sizes suitable for small, medium, and large breeds. These bones also come in different flavors, which can entice your puppy to chew on their designated toy rather than other household items. This promotes positive chewing habits and provides relief from teething discomfort simultaneously.
Edible Teething Sticks for Puppies
There is a range of reputable edible puppy teething treats and bones on the market that can help relieve your fur baby's mouth pain. Talk to your vet about which brand they'd recommend or pop into your local pet store. Be sure to choose the right size for your pup so they will gain the most benefit from the teething treat you choose.
Healthy Frozen Foods For Puppies to Chew
Try freezing dog-friendly foods such as small pieces of carrot, blueberries, or apples. Your dog also might enjoy chewing on an ice cube. If you are planning to offer your pup frozen treats, always speak to your vet first to ensure it's a good option for your pup.
My puppy keeps biting me, what should I do?
Nipping and biting are natural ways for puppies to play. When one puppy bites another too hard, the injured pup will emit a high-pitched yelp.
If your young puppy is nipping and biting at you, it's important to address this behavior early on. One effective method is to imitate the yelp of a hurt puppy when your little companion bites you. Let out a loud 'OW' in a high-pitched tone to startle your puppy and make them back off. Once your puppy stops and retreats, be sure to reward their good behavior.
However, if this approach leads to more aggressive nipping, it's best to quietly stop playing with your puppy and either walk away or gently place them in their crate for some quiet time.
Note: The advice provided in this post is intended for informational purposes and does not constitute medical advice regarding pets. For an accurate diagnosis of your pet's condition, please make an appointment with your vet.