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dog suck on blanket

Why do dogs suck on blankets?

Walking in on your dog sucking on his/her blanket may seem cute at first, but to some people, it may be a cause for alarm, especially if we’re talking about an adult dog.

However, the reason for this behavior is not boredom but something much more profound. And it may actually astonish you when you learn what it is because it will show you how similar our two species actually are. 

But the most important thing to know is that you don’t have to rush to the vet’s office or anything of the sort. This is more of a psychological issue.

So, let’s dive deeper into this interesting story.

Why does my dog suck on blankets?

There are many possible reasons why a dog may suck on his blanket, but most of them stem from their very early puppyhood when they still had to suck their mom’s milk.

If the mother wasn’t exactly kind and gentle, especially after her milk dried up, this may affect your pup and cause it to suck on a blanket. This behavior is nothing to worry about, mind you, and the best thing you can do is try and make your pet feel loved in their new home.

But to get back to the issue at hand, these are the most common reasons for this type of behavior. 

dog suck on blanket

It represents comfort for your dog

Being close to mom, apart from being close to lunch whenever they get hungry, is a source of comfort for puppies. This helps them deal with unknown sounds and situations while still with their brothers and sisters.

Mom’s fur is soft, warm and comfortable, just like a blanket, so it makes sense that your new pup will attach itself to it once you bring them over to their new home. That’s why it’s always good to have a blanket ready when you introduce a puppy to your house or apartment - it’s not just a form of bed prevention, they will be much calmer because of it.

It’s all mom’s fault

But just because puppies feel the need to huddle closer to their mother when they’re frightened, that doesn’t mean the mom will always be up for this.

As a matter of fact, some dog moms will simply not allow their pups to come closer, especially once they’re out of milk. Some pups will want to nurse even though there is no milk anymore, but their mom may not allow it. 

If the mother is behaving like this, the puppy may develop an attachment to something that reminds them of their mom, and nice and cozy blanket are the perfect thing for that.

Believe it or not, children will do exactly the same thing if they feel they don’t have the emotional support from THEIR mom - they may develop a strong bond with something like a pillow or a blanket themselves!

Teething

A much more straightforward reason for a dog chewing on a blanket may be the fact that your pup is teething.

There are some similarities between dogs and humans here too because teething can mean some pain and discomfort for the pup. The blanket can help soothe all of that, and dogs often have an uncontrollable urge to chew on things during this period.

It’s great if they can stay just on the blanket - your slippers or even some parts of the furniture can sometimes take damage, too. Just be patient with your dog because they’re not too happy about their teeth coming in, either.

Obsessive-compulsive disorder

Believe it or not, dogs can also suffer from OCD! In this case, though, it’s referred to as CCD - canine compulsive disorder. It’s pretty much what you’d expect: dogs go through a series of identical actions they seemingly can’t stop doing.

Sucking on a blanket is one of them, but there are also other things such as chasing their tail, pacing, spinning and so on.

You will be able to spot CCD if they are repeating these actions for incredibly long periods of time. For example, they may be biting their tail until they open a wound on it and cannot seem to stop what they’re doing, sometimes even for hours.

Treatment is possible with drugs that help absorb serotonin and by creating predictable daily routines, although you have to keep in mind that this condition is often a consequence of your dog’s genetic makeup.

Anxiety

As mentioned before, a blanket can be a source of comfort for your dog, so it’s no wonder that they turn to it in moments when their anxiety is high.

They can, for example, suck on it during a powerful thunderstorm outside, or if there’s fireworks or some other sudden and loud sound in the vicinity. In situations like these, a blanket can help them a lot to remain calm.

What should you do?

In most cases, there is absolutely no need for any drastic moves. Just be there for your pup and show them that you love them and that they can feel safe with you. Do your best to create a home in which they feel relaxed and comfortable, a home in the truest sense of the word.

The only exception to this is CCD. If you suspect that your dog has this kind of problem, take them to the vet and explain the issue. It will help a lot if you can make a video with your smartphone and show it to the doctor so that they can see for themselves what’s going on.

Conclusion

Dog sucking on blankets is usually nothing serious, and many will even regard it as extremely cute, especially while the dog is still very young. This behavior can often translate into adulthood too, and the best course of action is to provide your puppy with as much love as possible.

Just keep an eye out for obsessive-compulsive disorder because in that case, you will need to seek help from a vet. 

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