Why Does My German Shepherd Destroy Everything?

German Shepherds are known for being one of the most intelligent dog breeds. They are also known for being extremely active and destructive, especially when they are young. 

If you have a German Shepherd, you may be wondering why he or she seems to destroy everything in sight. 

Here is a look at some of the reasons why German Shepherds tend to be so destructive and what you can do to help curb this behavior.

Why does my German Shepherd destroy everything?

There are a few possible reasons why your German Shepherd may be acting out by destroying things in your home. 

It could be that they are bored and need more stimulation, or they might be experiencing separation anxiety. 

It’s also possible that they are trying to get your attention or asking for more exercise. 

If you’re not sure what the reason is, it’s best to consult with a veterinarian or animal behaviorist to get to the root of the problem. 

Once you know the cause, you can work on finding a solution that will help your dog feel happier and less destructive.

german shepherd in snow

10 Reasons German Shepherd being destructive

1. Lack of exercise: A dog that isn’t given enough exercise is often the culprit behind destructive behaviors. 

Without an outlet for their energy, they will find ways to burn off that excess energy and unfortunately, that often means destroying your belongings.

2. Boredom: Boredom is another common reason behind a dog’s destructive behavior. If your dog doesn’t have anything to do during the day, they will likely find ways to entertain themselves and that often means getting into things they’re not supposed to.

3. Separation anxiety: Many dogs suffer from separation anxiety when left alone and this can lead to destructive behaviors as well. Dogs with separation anxiety often chew on furniture or other items in an attempt to relieve their anxiety.

4. Lack of attention: Dogs are social creatures and need attention from their humans in order to feel happy and fulfilled. If a dog isn’t getting enough attention, they may start acting out in destructive ways in order to get your attention.

5. Fear or anxiety: Fear and anxiety can also lead to destructive behaviors in dogs.

If your dog is afraid of something, they may try to escape by chewing through walls or digging holes. And if they’re anxious, they may chew on themselves or pace back and forth endlessly.

6. Teething: Puppies often chew destructively when they’re going through the teething process. This is because their gums are sore and chewing helps to relieve the discomfort.

7. Lack of training: A dog that hasn’t been properly trained is more likely to engage in destructive behaviors. This is because they haven’t learned what is and isn’t acceptable and so they may do things like chewing on furniture or jumping on people.

8. Genetic disposition: Some dogs are simply more prone to destructive behavior than others. This can be due to genetics or even early experiences in life that have shaped their behavior.

9. Poor nutrition: Dogs that aren’t well-nourished are also more likely to act out destructively. This is because their bodies are lacking the nutrients they need to function properly and so they may turn to destructive behaviors as a way to get those nutrients.

10. Medical conditions: Finally, there are some medical conditions that can cause dogs to act out destructively. Conditions like Cushing’s disease and thyroid problems can lead to increased levels of anxiety and stress which can then lead to destructive behaviors. 

If you think your dog may be suffering from a medical condition, please consult with your veterinarian.

german shepherd

How to stop the German Shepherd being destructive?

The best way to stop a German Shepherd from being destructive is to provide them with plenty of exercise and mental stimulation. 

German Shepherds are intelligent dogs that need to be given regular opportunities to use their minds and bodies. 

A tired dog is a good dog, so make sure your German Shepherd is getting plenty of physical and mental exercise every day.

If your German Shepherd is already exhibiting destructive behaviors, there are a few things you can do to help curb those behaviors. 

First, make sure that you are providing plenty of outlets for your dog’s energy and activity level. 

If they are not getting enough exercise, they may turn to destructive behaviors out of boredom or frustration. 

Secondly, try to redirect your dog’s focus when they start to exhibit destructive behaviors. 

If you can provide a toy or activity that is more stimulating and interesting to your dog, they may be less likely to turn to destructive activities. 

Finally, make sure that you are providing consistent discipline and training for your German Shepherd. 

Destructive behaviors often occur when dogs are not given clear rules and expectations. If you are consistent in your discipline and training, your dog will be less likely to engage in destructive behaviors.

5 Things to consider to stop German Shepherd destruction

1. German Shepherds are bred as working dogs, so they have a lot of energy to expend. If you don’t provide them with an outlet for that energy, they may start acting out in destructive ways.

2. German Shepherds are very intelligent dogs and need to be kept mentally stimulated. If they’re bored, they may start destroying things out of sheer boredom.

3. German Shepherds are strong dogs and need a lot of exercise. If they’re not getting enough exercise, they may start acting out in destructive ways.

4. German Shepherds are social creatures and need companionship. If they’re left alone for too long, they may become anxious or depressed, which can lead to destructive behaviors.

5. German Shepherds are sensitive dogs and need gentle, consistent training. If they’re trained harshly or inconsistently, they may become fearful or anxious, which can lead to destructive behaviors.

Mental exercises for German Shepherd to stop destruction

1. Boredom is often the root cause of destructive behaviours in German Shepherds. Make sure your dog has plenty of toys to keep him occupied, and take him for regular walks or runs to let off steam.

2. If your dog is chewing on furniture or other household items, provide him with alternative items that are specifically designed for chewiing, such as rawhide bones or rubber chew toys.

3. Dogs can also become destructive when they’re anxious or stressed. If you think this may be the case with your German Shepherd, try some calming techniques, such as providing a safe space (such as a crate) for him to retreat to, or playing soothing music. 

You may also want to consult with a veterinary behaviourist to help you identify and address the underlying causes of your dog’s anxiety.

4. German Shepherds are intelligent dogs and need mentally stimulating activities to stay happy and content. Try teaching your dog new tricks, playing interactive games with him, or taking him on Nosework or agility courses.

5. If your German Shepherd is destroying things out of sheer excitement or energy, make sure he is getting enough exercise. 

A tired dog is a good dog! Remember to include some mental stimulation in his exercise regime as well, such as playing fetch or going for a walk in new places.

Final Thoughts

If you are experiencing problems with your German Shepherd being destructive, there are a few things you should consider. 

The first step is to rule out any medical issues that may be causing the behavior.

Once you have done that, look at environmental factors such as boredom, lack of exercise or poor training. 

Finally, make sure your dog gets enough mental stimulation to keep them from getting bored and resorting to destructive behavior. 

There are many different ways to provide mental stimulation for your German Shepherd, so find what works best for you and your pet and stick to it. 

Hopefully this article has given you some ideas on how to stop your German Shepherd from being destructive.

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