Dogs like chewing on things, and it's common for a dog to chew on wood. They love doing it, and that's probably the reason why they always enjoy playing with chew toys. Many people know that it's okay for dogs to chew on bones and treats, but they want to know if they should do something if they see their dog chewing wood. Of course, it's not the best thing for your dog to chew on, but you may be the one to blame, especially if you use small logs or sticks when playing fetch with your dog. Why do dogs eat wood? You need to know this to be able to do something stop them from doing it.

Why Do Dogs Eat Wood?

Your dog eats wood and you're worried about it. Here are some of the reasons why they do it and how you can fix the issue.


Your dog may chew on wood because of boredom. You don't find enough time to play with him, and this may make him look for another activity. Dogs need something to keep them amused, and if you're not doing anything to help your dog, you may soon see him chewing on wood.


Separation Anxiety

It's a no-brainer that dogs live in packs and they love to interact. If you leave them alone for all day long, you might see them becoming a victim of separation anxiety. Sometimes, a simple fix like getting him a toy will work, but you may also consider using a professional's help to resolve the issue.


Natural Behavior

Chewing is nothing new for dogs. Dogs are foragers, so their natural instinct is to chew on things and investigate everything around them with their mouths. Of course, you're taking good care of your dog and he doesn't need to forage for food, but you cannot change his natural instinct. What it means is that you cannot make him stop chewing, but you can give him something safe to chew on, which will also keep them from chewing on wood.



Why do dogs eat wood? It may be because they are teething. It's usually the issue with puppies and you will quite often see them chew on wood to alleviate the pain of teething. Getting them some teething treats will help resolve the issue.

Is Eating Wood Bad for Dogs?


It depends. The most common issue is that your dog may sustain a stick-related injury when chewing on wood. It is worth mentioning that if you're playing fetch with a stick, it may also cause an injury. Stick-chasing injuries are usually more severe as compared to the stick-chewing injuries. It doesn't mean chewing won't cause other problems – your dog may have splinters stuck in tissues in the mouth or chewing on wood may also lead to obstruction of their respiratory or digestive tract. Here are some of the most common stick chewing injuries:

  • Small wood splinters stuck in the laryngeal tissues, under the gum line, and in the tongue

  • Large wood fragments stuck between the surface of the hard palate and the upper teeth

  • Swallowed large wood fragments may result in digestive tract bleeding and irritation

  • Inhaled pieces of wood may lead to the obstruction, infection, or irritation of the respiratory tract, and may even damage the trachea, which may cause damage to the nerves and heart.

It means that though the stick-chasing dogs suffer more debilitating and severe injuries as compared to the stick chewers, but your dog may eventually get hurt in both cases. It is therefore important to find the answer to "Why do dogs eat wood?" and do something to fix the issue.

How to Keep Dogs from Eating Wood?

It is important to know why your dog is eating wood to find a fix, but taking the following actions will definitely help correct the issue to some extent. You may have to consider getting in touch with a professional if your dog doesn't respond to these fixes.

Keep Them Away from Wood

Is there anything that can be simpler than this? You just need to ensure that your dog isn't in an environment where there is wood everywhere. It is sometimes easier said than done because your environment may not allow you to keep your dog away from wood, especially if you live near a wooded area. Even if it seems difficult in the beginning, you should still do your job and clear as many logs, sticks or pieces of wood that your dog has collected as possible. Cover any woodpile you may have in your yard.


Give Dogs New Toys

Yes, dogs love chewing, so why not give them something safer. You can find a variety of chew toys and other stuff in the market today. The thing is that your dog may not at once like the chew toy you bring him. It may require a little bit testing, but you should do it to find what he likes the most. Always encourage your dog to chew on the toy you've bought and discourage inappropriate chewing.


Discourage Chewing Wood

It is sometimes a good idea to scold your dog a bit whenever you see him chewing on wood or something inappropriate. Take that object away immediately. Use another chew toy to divert his attention. The sooner you take actions, the better. It usually becomes a tad difficult to discourage chewing behavior if it is already established.


Accompany Dogs

Remember, your dog loves to be around people. Dogs are social creatures, and your company can really help them learn what's good for them and what they should avoid. Play with them. Don't make them feel bored or else they will start looking for other ways, even harmful ones, to amuse them.


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  • Ashley Nov.7 11:59
    My problem is my English bulldog is eating all the wood in house. The trim on every doorway, every chair in the kitchen, the siding off the house, and the microwave stand. I'm at a loss. He is inside with us and has lots of toys and at all times. We have 3 other dogs and none of them have acted like this! What can be done? My house is destroyed!
  • Brenda RamseyAug.7 12:44
    Our Sheba Inu.Has ate a hole in his dog house, We take great care of him and the grand kids play with him.We buy but he want play with them, and we buy him rawhide bones and he.refuse to chew on them.We tore down the dog house he ate the hole in, and got him a new one and he is already chewing it up. Please. help.Brenda
  • M HingstonMay.5 13:52
    I have a dog that is part German Shepard, Golden Retriever, and Pit Bull. My problem is this. She will gather into one area every branch, regardless of how big or long it is, and every stick, log that she can carry. She will eat the wood, and bark. She begs to go outside to do this. I am home with her a lot so I don't think it is due to her having separation anxiety. I am so very worried that she isn't eating enough of her dog food and that she is filling up on bark and wood. I have taken her to the vet because she has started itching herself all the time....they think she is allergic to the food I was feeding her so now I am ticking with no grain, venison food. Just this morning she started throwing up, and it was yellow foamy fluid, which I read her stomach is empty of food. I am really starting to worry. Any suggestions or help would be appreciated. I live in the woods, and she loves going outside, so I can't easily take sticks away from her. Thanks in advance.
  • Helen JonesMay.25 18:45
    @ : Hello, we have an American Pitbull Terrier, we've had her for four months now, and have noticed that she loves eating wood. My daughter, her owner, have bought her many nice toys that she can chew on, but she prefers wood, and if she sees a stick, we will look outside or notice while we are there with her, that she will ignore her very nice toys, cow hide, etc so that she can simply chew on wood. I doubt it is a boring thing for her, just this morning, I took her for another 2-hour walk throughout our beautiful naturally preserved trails, which she loves to do, and does it twice a day! She also loves swimming, she jumped into the pond this morning and what do you know, a piece of drifting wood caught her eye, she swam over and got it, and began chewing on it as if it was the best thing that has ever happened to her! She is not a year yet, and I am thinking she is teething. But, whatever there is about wood, they seem to gravitate to it and I know our girl absolutely loves it!
  • Katherine AsenciosJan.16 22:07
    I have a year old dog. She's a chow mix and just loves wooden sticks. On our walks she's fine and will usually drop it or leave it on command. The problem is when I take her to the dog run. She plays with other dogs and will pick up a stick and run around with it. Letting go of it there is another issue lol. I'm working on the commands training her in the park to see if it helps but I'm wondering if anyone has any other suggestions?
  • Amanda SOct.26 01:28
    Hello everybody, I have a big problem. I took my puppy from a dog foster home about a year ago. I love him to bits; he has a great personality, and I feel that he loves our family so much. BUT he chews things A LOT. . So, leaving home is always a challenge for us. My husband and I were thinking about taking him to 'doggy school', but then again, it’s extremely expensive, and the nearest 'doggy school' is far away from us. Maybe you have some advice? THANK YOU!!!!
  • FranFeb.21 05:21
    @ : My Beagle went through these things as a puppy, but grew out of it, he was always chewing stones. He's 6 now, doesn't do it anymore. My dogs are walked everyday and do training, mostly obedience. Having them use their brains will tire them out quicker than anything
  • Julie Coulson Sep.26 09:08
    I have no problem with larger pieces of wood I can remove those, my Cavoodle is seven months old and likes the bark on my garden, I can't stop her doing this as we recently covered all our garden beds with the larger sized chips left from my own trees when felled some months ago. I have stopped worrying about it but do keep an eye on her. We have a second problem though, she steals the large decorative river stones from around our bird baths and grinds on them. When she is fed up with doing that she proceeds to throw it up in the air and chase it. I am constantly taking them away and showing her where they have to stay and telling her no ! when she picks one up again but to no avail. Looks like the stones will have to go doesn't it ? A friend of mine once said " if you don't want your dog to have a stick, then wipe it with something she won't like" as for me I would rather wipe something nice over it so that she will lick rather than chew........ Would that work I wonder ? All the best with it Julie ,
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