Your Goldendoodle is a great addition to the family, but there may be some behavioral issues that they participate in that you are not that fond of.
One of these may include the Goldendoodle going after socks around the home.
Some will choose to bite the socks and make holes in them and others will eat the socks whole.
But why do Goldendoodles seem to love socks so much?
Why Do Goldendoodles Love Socks?
Goldendoodles love socks because they are soft and easy to chew. They eat them out of boredom or for attention. Some may choose to eat the sock to help guard it and keep the sock away from others. And some may do it if they suffer from a condition known as pica, or the propensity to eat non-consumable items.
Eating socks is never a good thing for your Goldendoodle and it is a good idea to train them not to do this.
Let’s look a little closer at some of the reasons that your Goldendoodle is eating what they shouldn’t and a few of the actions you can take to make this stop.
There are many reasons why a Goldendoodle is going to love socks.
Some Goldendoodles will just bite and chew on the sock, helping them to have a new toy to play with but leaving you with socks that do not fit with all the holes in them again.
Others will choose to eat the sock for a variety of reasons from boredom, getting a response out of you, or to guard a possession they think is theirs.
Obviously, eating socks is not a good thing for your Goldendoodle.
No matter how much they seem to love it, this can be dangerous for the dog to do.
Cloth comes with no nutritional value.
And regardless of the size of the dog or the reason that they choose to eat the socks, this material will end up causing a blockage in the stomach of the dog and could result in them needing surgery.
Why Do Doodles Eat Socks?
Many dog owners wonder why their Goldendoodle is eating their socks.
It is not like the socks have a lot of flavor or are a part of a healthy diet.
One reason is boredom or to get attention from their owners.
If you start to interact with the dog the second they have a sock, trying to catch it from them before they eat it, then a game of keep-away will start and the game is very rewarding to the dog.
This gives them the attention that they need and they will continue to take more socks and try to eat them.
Learning how to change the way you react to the dog having the sock can help.
If they think that all of this is just a game, they are likely to continue doing it again and again.
And since eating socks is not a good thing for them, you need to be proactive to make sure that they will stop.
Another issue is that the dog may use it as a form of resource guarding.
In this case, the dog has decided that the sock is a valuable item, just like some of their toys, and they are eager to have this.
Dogs who decide to guard the socks will engage in distance-increasing behaviors, which are simply behaviors that will discourage people or other dogs from coming near so that they do not feel that they will lose the item.
Swallowing the sock could be part of this process as well.
It may happen when the dog feels that someone is getting too close to them.
Keep in mind that not all dogs follow this pattern.
It is not uncommon for a dog to just swallow a sock right away to help them store the sock far away from others taking it.
You may also notice that your dog is swallowing a sock because they have a condition known as pica.
Pica is a propensity of the dog to eat objects that are non-consumable.
This can include a lot of different options like rocks, leaves, dirt, and socks.
The cause for this type of behavior is not always something that we can identify, but it is often believed that pica is a behavior disorder, sometimes a metabolic or digestive issue, or another underlying medical condition.
Sometimes the issue is because socks are seen as a reward to the dog.
They like them because it feels good for some reason or because they like that the socks retain the smell of their owners, even after you wash them a few times.
Each dog is different and knowing why they choose to eat socks can depend on the individual dog.
You will need to look at the situations that the dog is in when they are eating these socks to figure out what is causing the issue and why your Goldendoodle thinks that this is good behavior for them to do.
What Should I Do if My Goldendoodle Eats a Sock?
While eating socks is not a good thing for your Goldendoodle to do, not all sock eating is going to put them on the surgical table.
In the best case scenario, the process of peristalsis will happen.
This is when the normal digestive process of your dog can help to push the sock through the stomach, out to the small intestine, then to the large intestine, and then finally out of the body.
If the sock can make it to the large intestine, then the rest of the ride will be smooth for the sock.
The area that tends to cause the most issues with your dog eating a sock is the narrow and curvy areas of the intestinal tract.
This is the area where the sock will get stuck.
This becomes even more difficult because the propensity is more likely to swell around the sock.
When this happens, there is no way that the sock will pass on its own and you will need to have surgery for your Goldendoodle.
When caught on time, there are a few steps that the owner is able to do to save an expensive trip to the vet.
When the sock was just swallowed in the past few hours, it is possible to induce vomiting to help get the sock out.
You need to call your vet to learn the right dosage of materials to help get the sock out.
This could usually get the sock out before it caused any damage.
If it has been more than a few hours since the sock went down, it will depend on the size of the dog.
If the Goldendoodle is larger, it is possible to just do a wait and see process.
They will be given a list of symptoms that happen when the dog has intestinal blockage so they can take the dog in when they get sick or if something seems to be wrong.
Either the dog will pass the sock or you will need to take them to the vet to get help.
How to Stop the Dog from Eating Socks
The best thing that you can do to protect your dog is to prevent them from eating the socks in the first place.
This can save on a very expensive vet bill.
Some of the steps you can use include:
- Put a lockdown on the socks: Make sure that the socks are put away and out of reach of the dog. They can’t eat the socks if they can’t get to the socks.
- Provide more exercise and mental stimulation: Your Goldendoodle can get bored easily. Getting them out to play and providing them mental stimulation with training and more can help prevent boredom so they will not go after the socks.
- Training: With the right training, even if the dog grabs the sock, you can teach them how to leave it and drop it early on. This can prevent them from swallowing the sock and getting very sick.
By being proactive, you will be able to take care of this issue and ensure that your dog will not get ahold of the socks to start with so they are less likely to get sick when they swallow and eat the sock either.
Preventing Your Goldendoodle from Eating Socks
No matter the reason your Goldendoodle is eating the socks, this is not a good behavior for them to participate in.
They need to learn how to avoid this and not consume the socks.
With no nutritional value and the potential to cause a number of digestive problems, keeping your dog away from the socks can be an important step.
Keeping your socks picked up, changing the way you respond to the dog when they do grab the socks, and talking to your vet can ensure that the behavior will stop soon.