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I have a 7 month old maltipoo named Lacey. She is extremely well behaved and we ...

kowaloff

Question: 
I have a 7 month old maltipoo named Lacey. She is extremely well behaved and we give her free run of the house when we are at work. Everything was going perfectly for a month, and then one day we came home to find that she had torn up some of our carpeting. Assuming it was a one-time event, we left her alone again the next day and it happened again. Then we started using our pet gate to keep her in the kitchen. She has never escaped from behind the gate before, but now she jumps it without a problem. Is her destructive chewing associated with adolescence? I know she is about that age, but she doesn't seem to have any other signs of adolescence. She still obeys our commands and isn't having accidents in the house. She was so well behaved that first month she was alone, I don't know where this came from all of a sudden! Please help!
Answer: 

It definitely could be adolescence. If you think she's jumping the gate, not climbing it, I'd stack another gate on top of the first one, if possible, and see if that contains her. You may need to kennel her for a couple of weeks and then you could try again to give her freedom. Sometimes just keeping them from getting in trouble for a while is enough to get their mind off of it and then you don't have to worry about it anymore. If it's a particular spot in the carpet, Bitter Apple spray (or some other taste deterrent) might work. You'd spray the carpet so it tastes bad to her. It doesn't work for all dogs, but it might be worth a shot. A stuffed Kong or some fun chewbones left for her may help as well... and plenty of exercise before you leave her.

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