Dogs naturally love chewing on things and putting stuff in their mouth, and since sticks are readily available outdoors, it’s only normal that they take to chewing on sticks.
Another reason dogs chew on sticks is to grab their owner’s attention, and in the same vein, stick chewing by a dog can indicate a medical condition.
It’s In Their Nature
It has always been one of the natural instincts of dogs right from the beginning of time to chew on sticks.
The ancestors of dogs were known for using their immediate environments to clean and groom their bodies. And as a result, ancient dogs developed a habit of chewing on sticks and stones to exercise their teeth, get rid of dirt lodged in their mouth, and keep their dentition clean and strong.
Dogs often look at sticks as bones, and who can blame them? Sticks are typically shaped in an oblong manner like bones and offer plenty to munch on.
Sticks also provide dogs with a gratifying workout and the opportunity to exercise their jaws and teeth. And although chewing on sticks doesn’t taste the same way as chewing on bones, it must feel good to dogs.
Some dogs chew on sticks to seek attention; This is very common in dogs that are bored, attention-deprived and seeking a means of getting their owners’ attention.
After working long during the day and coming home, due to over-excitement and demand for attention, a dog may take to chewing on inappropriate objects such as sticks to make its presence known.
And if this stick-chewing behavior elicits a sort of response from the owner, you can expect the frequency of the pooch’s stick chewing to further increase.
Stick Chewing Can Be A Sign Of An Underlying Medical Condition
Pica is a medical condition that is characterized by a pooch’s obsessive and compulsive desire to chew on non-food substances. And if you observe your pooch chewing non-stop on that piece of wood, chances are that the dog is suffering from pica.
Causes of pica in dogs vary, and they range from improper feeding to hormonal deficiencies and the presence of primary diseases such as diabetes. It is also worth noting that certain dog breeds, like the Labrador Retriever, are more prone to suffering from pica, compared to other dogs.