Why Does My Dog Eat Electrical Cords

As you are cleaning up the house, you find your dog quietly hiding in one corner of the house chewing on to something.

Upon closer look, you are surprised to see him getting his mouth on the electrical cords and this stirred up your horror and concern for his safety.

Your dog is eating electrical cords because he is attracted by the appealing scents of the cords. He likes the chewing texture of the cords or is trying to ease his teething discomfort. He is suffering from Pica, Dementia or diet deficiency. He is chewing just to ease his boredom.

Scent Of Electrical Cords Caught His Attention

Dogs have a highly sensitive sense of smell, which they make use of to investigate the world around them.

That is why when you give your dog food or treats that he has never had before, he will instinctively explore them with his nose before eating them.

This is especially so if your dog is new to his environment and he will go through the house sniffing every corner and room.

This instinctive behavior is known as olfactory exploration and helps him to learn more about his surroundings.

As the electrical cords are all over the corners of the house, its scent will be picked up by your dog’s sense of smell, and he will want to investigate it further.

He will then run his tongue across it, and start chewing it to explore the cord.

He Likes The Chewing Texture Of The Cords

Your dog likes the hard and tough insulation on the cord which offers him the chewing bite that he needs.

He finds the strands of electrical wires are helping him to clean up his teeth just like what dental floss will do for your teeth.

If you notice that your dog has been chewing on the cord of your appliance, it may be an indication that he is ready to get his mouth on more challenging chewing toys.

This is more of the case if your dog belongs to destructive dog breeds such as Boxer, Labrador, Labradoodle and Beagle who like to have his mouth on things he can find due to his natural destructive instincts.

Although chewing on electrical cords can provide the needed dental stimulation that your dog is looking for, this is certainly a behavior that is prohibited.

What you should do is to get him some rawhide bones or chewing sticks and toys that are safe for your dog to exercise his mouth.

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Chewing Cords To Ease His Teething Discomfort

Your dog will be undergoing his teething stage when he is around 3 weeks old and this process will take about 6 months for all his 42 adult teeth to fully erupt. 

There is a lot of teething discomfort that he will be experiencing during this stage, and he will start exhibiting signs such as frequent drooling, red and swollen gum, visible loss of teeth, and start chewing on things he can get hold of.

That explains why you will see him chewing on wooden furniture, bedding, your shoes and clothing as well as electrical cords as they are readily available to him.

This chewing habit is his way to get comfort from the teething pain.

It’s part of his teething process, and will go away once he passes through the teething phase.

Having said that, it is important that you keep an eye on him to prevent him from ingesting something toxic or indigestible into his digestive system.

If you see your dog exhibiting any symptoms of vomiting, diarrhea, seizures, irritation or pain, take him to see a vet immediately.

You should provide him with some safe chewing toys, frozen mini bagels or bananas or cold carrots for him to chew on to ease the pain in his mouth.

I would give my dog a wet towel to chew on whenever he is having teething pain as this will not only help him in easing his discomfort but will also keep his mouth moist.

He Is Suffering From Compulsive Eating Disorder (Pica)

When your dog is having Pica, you will find him craving for non-food substances such as fingernails, clay, paint, hair, dirt, plastic, wood, bark, paper and even electrical cords in the house.

He will eat these items with great interest and excitement and in an uncontrollable manner.

So keep a lookout for your dog’s eating behavior and if he finds him starting to eat these things, you must take him to the vet immediately.

Pica is a serious condition and needs to be treated immediately as your dog could have eaten something toxic or choked on these items.

He Is Suffering From Dementia

Your dog is not able to differentiate what he can and cannot eat. He thinks that everything is his food.

This is what happens when your dog is suffering from dementia

It is a condition that occurs when your dog’s brain functions are impaired.  It causes him to have confusion, forgetfulness, lack of coordination, depression, anxiety, and other behavior related problems.

He sees everything is edible and will get his mouth on anything. You will have to pay more attention to him and keep him well taken care of.

Dementia often happens to senior dogs of more than 10 years old and does not happen overnight. 

If you notice any changes in your dog’s behavior, it is better to seek help as soon as possible.

Your veterinarian will be able to perform a checkup on your dog and offer him some treatment.

There are medications that your vet can prescribe to help relieve these symptoms.

Diet Deficiency Causing Him To Chew On Cords

Your dog is not getting the needed nutrients and minerals to maintain his body from his diet, and he is using his own way to get them.

He is certainly not going to know which are the foods that can provide him with the essential nutrients that his body needs.

He just knows that he needs those nutrients and minerals and that is when you will find him chewing on things that he can easily get his mouth on, such as your furniture, shoes, grass and his poop or electrical cords around the house.

What you should do is to perform a review of his diet to ensure that he gets a balanced and nutritious food plan to keep him healthy.

Depending on factors such as your dog’s age, breed, size, gender as well as his level of activeness, you will have to adjust his diet regimen accordingly.

Avoid giving your dog those dry kibbles that are missing all the essential vitamins and minerals that his body requires.

You can either go for homemade dog food (which will require your time and effort to prepare) or some commercially ready raw dog food for your dog.

A raw diet is made from foods that have been uncooked or unprocessed by humans, which typically includes organ and muscle meat, whole bone, raw eggs, fresh fruits and vegetables.

These foods are considered natural because they do not contain any artificial ingredients or chemicals.

This means that your dog will not be consuming anything that is harmful to him. However, the downside of this is that it will be much more expensive to buy when compared to homemade dog food.

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He Is Keeping Himself Busy Through Chewing The Cords

Boredom can lead to your dog’s destructive behavior.

When your dog is left alone with nothing to keep himself busy, he will start to explore things around him and his curiosity will drive him to chew on everything in sight.

So it is important that you plan for adequate activities to help your pet overcome the boredom and frustration that can make him destructive.

There are several ways to keep your dog occupied during the day:

1. Take him to a dog park where he can run around and play with other dogs. This will help him to release his pent-up energy in his body.

2. Place various chewing toys in different locations around the house and let your dog play with them.

3. Go for a walk or run with your dog daily.

4. Physical activities that involve a purpose, such as fetching, tug-o-war and retrieving, can be very effective in keeping your dog’s mind focused on something other than being bored.

It is important to make sure that your dog has a lot of mental and physical stimulation to keep himself occupied.

If he does not get the opportunity to explore or play, he may start to destroy things in the house.

This destructive habit can be a nightmare for you, especially when you are away for work or out for a long day of errands, and he is left unattended.

So plan for some activities in his daily routine to keep him occupied and to create good habits in him.

Keep in mind that dogs are natural explorers, so it is easy for them to get into trouble when left alone with nothing to keep them occupied.

Danger On Chewing Electrical Cords

There is a high risk that if your dog bites down hard enough, the cord could tear and that would expose the electrical wires inside, which could possibly electrocute him if it is a LIVE power cord.

You can lower the risk by making sure that the electrical outlet is always turned off when the appliances are not in use and using dog repellent spray on the electrical cords to deter your dog from going near them.

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