Why Does My Dog Steal My Clothes: And How To Stop It?

We all know how frustrating it can be when our clothes go missing. But what’s even more frustrating is when you find out your dog has been stealing them!

Our furry friends may not have the most sophisticated reasoning skills, but they are still capable of finding a way to get what they want. especially if that thing happens to be on the floor right in front of them.

If you’re tired of washing your favorite sweater for the third time this week because it was found chewed up and stuffed under the couch, read this article to learn why dogs steal clothes and how to stop them from doing so!

Generally, dogs do such things due to an array of reasons. Since dogs have a strong sense of smell, they like to steal your clothes as they hold your scent. Furthermore, these furry pals might also pick up anything that is lying on the floor due to boredom. Also, a pet dog might steal your clothes to seek your attention and affection.

7 Reason Why Dogs Steal Your Clothes

Most of the dogs relish stealing the clothes of their owners. The only difference is that some furry pals are gentle with it whereas some are not. At times, your beloved pet can even tear your favorite outfit or socks. To curb such behavior of your pet, it is necessary to understand why these pooches steal your clothes. For this, the following factors would help you out.

1. Owner’s smell

Dogs love to snuggle and play with anything that contains their owners’ smell. This happens when your pet is missing you. These furry pals have a strong nose and they also remember the particular scents. Besides this, dogs also relish stealing your stinky and sweaty socks. Dogs are most comfortable with the familiar scents.

That is why in your absence, your furry pal would steal your clothes to feel your presence. It helps to make your pet feel secure and contented when they are alone.

2. Leisure Activity

Stealing clothes can also be a part of your dog’s pastime. When pets experience boredom, they look for the nearby stuff to remain engaged. If you leave your clothes lying here and there in the home, then your pet is more likely to steal them.

3. Natural Instinct

Dogs have an instinct due to which they often scavenge. Hence, they prey upon the clothes and tear them off. Some dogs are quite gentle and might steal your clothes out of mischievousness only. It also depends upon the breed and personality of the dog.

4. Playfulness

Most of the dog breeds are playful and hence they always crave good playtime. If your pet is sitting idle, then he would look for the objects that are lying nearby. Dogs like to steal clothes and make their owners run after them. Socks are quite a soft target for dogs that makes them delightful.  

5. Teething

When dogs are in their growing stage, they go through the teething phase. This usually happens when the teeth of your dog are about to come. During this phase, furry pals crave an object or a toy on which they can chew. So if your pet dog is going through his teething phase, he would like to chew on your clothes also.

6. Seeking Attention and Love

There is no denying the fact that dogs are absolute attention seekers. These pooches are always in search of getting endless affection from their owners. If you had a long day away from home, then your dog would steal your clothes, especially socks upon your arrival. Besides this, your dog would take your clothes and make you run after him to get your attention. This also signifies that your pet loves and longs for your company.

7. Separation Anxiety and Insecurity

When dogs are alone at home or their owner is not at home, these furry pals tend to feel insecure and anxious. By nuzzling with their owners’ clothes, these furry buddies feel secure and comfortable. Also, sleeping around their owners’ clothes helps to ease the anxiety in pet dogs.

How to Stop Your Dog from Stealing Clothes?

As a pet owner, you must be thinking about whether you should allow your dog to steal clothes or not. There is no harm in encouraging such behavior by your pet until it is not hostile. The following are a few effective ways to stop your dog from stealing clothes.

1. Getting chew toys

Dogs often take away the clothes of their owners to chew upon them. It helps these furry pals to meet their teething cravings. To prevent this, you can get chew toys for your pet. You can even opt for calcium bones for your dog on which he can chew. This will avert your pet from stealing your clothes to chew.

2. Obedience training

If your pet has become habitual of stealing and tearing your clothes, then you need to stop him. With the help of obedience training, you can curb such hostile behavior of your pet. Make sure to train your dog from the very beginning for effective results. Also, teach him the difference between playfulness and misconduct.

3. Keeping your clothes well organized

If you keep your clothes lying here and there, then it is obvious for your dog to steal them. That is why you should always keep your clothes well organized in the wardrobe. For dirty clothes, you can even opt for a laundry basket. These measures would not allow your dog to gain easy accessibility to your clothes.

4. Play with your dog

Dogs steal and play with the clothes out of boredom also. It is necessary to keep your furry pal engaged in some productive activity. For this, you can get toys such as balls and puzzles that are suitable for your pooch. It would not only keep him engaged for long, but will also stop him from taking your clothes.

5. Regular exercise

Pets indulge in hostile activities only when they are not able to release their energy. You should take your dog out for a walk for at least 45-60 minutes on regular basis. Besides this, you can even indulge your furry companion in other outdoor activities. It would help your dog to release his energy and remain fit. Also, a tired pet is less likely to steal or tear your clothes.

6. Giving much attention and love

To make your pet feel happy, you should give him enough attention, care, and love. You should even pat and cuddle with your dog to make him feel loved. Those dogs that are not given much affection would steal your clothes to come into your sight.

7. Reward your pet with a treat

If your pet is taking away your clothes and is not giving them back, then show him a treat. Tell your pet that if he returns your clothes, you would give him a treat. By appreciating the good conduct of your dog, you can curb his hostility.

Wrap Up

Most of the pets steal clothes and it is quite normal also. The innocence in the eyes of these little pirates is sure to melt your heart. Though, such notorious acts of your pet might amuse you; it is necessary to stop his misconduct.

Stealing clothes is not a big deal but tearing them is a one. Make sure to train your pet for the same with love and patience to get effective results.

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