How to Make Homemade Taste Deterrent for Dogs

Written by cathleen anderson
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How to Make Homemade Taste Deterrent for Dogs
Puppies will turn tail and run from certain scents. (Jupiterimages/ Images)

A number of natural items can help curb unwanted chewing behaviour in pets. Making your own taste deterrent is simple and less expensive than purchasing one at a pet shop. Of course, the best deterrent is behaviour modification. Use that in conjunction with a homemade remedy and you will have little difficulty preventing puppies and dogs from chewing on forbidden objects or frequenting areas where you would rather not have them (such as taking a roll in your freshly planted flower bed!).

Skill level:
Moderately Easy

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Things you need

  • Large spray bottle
  • Apple cider vinegar
  • White vinegar
  • Water
  • Cayenne pepper
  • Citrus (oil, juice, peels, chunks of fruit)
  • Rubbing alcohol
  • Mouthwash
  • Alum

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  1. 1

    Fill a large spray bottle with one cup each of apple cider vinegar, white vinegar and water. Shake to mix. Apply the spray to any objects and areas forbidden to your puppy. The smell alone will detract the pup from further exploration. Be sure to reapply the mixture after two or three days because the scent will dissipate.

  2. 2

    Mix one tablespoon of cayenne pepper with one cup of water and place in a spray bottle. Shake vigorously and spray on table legs or any surfaces you want your puppy to leave alone. The taste will repel your dog if the scent does not, and it will not harm your pet.

  3. 3

    Place the peels of any citrus fruit around flower beds or your garden to keep your dog from investigating further. You can also create a spray by using one cup of lemon juice and 1/2 cup of white vinegar. Or, combine 1/2 cup of water with 1/2 cup of lemon juice and add a tablespoon of rubbing alcohol. Shake to mix and place in a spray bottle. Apply to forbidden objects to deter your pet.

  4. 4

    Purchase antiseptic mouthwash and place it in a spray bottle. Spray on the areas you want your pet to leave alone. The alcohol content in the mouthwash gives it a powerful odour that will repel the dog.

  5. 5

    Use alum, found in the spice aisle of the grocery store, and mix it with a little water. Use a spray bottle to apply the mixture to appropriate areas. You can also purchase an unscented deodorant spray that contains alum, and use it in the same way. The alum is very drying and dogs do not enjoy getting it in their mouths.

Tips and warnings

  • Not all repellents work for every dog. You may have to experiment with what works for your dog.
  • Some dogs may become tolerant of a deterrent. Varying the type of deterrent you use can help.
  • Repellents are no substitute for good behavioural training.
  • Never apply a taste deterrent directly to your pet's skin without the direction of your veterinarian.
  • Never spray any repellent into a dog's eyes.

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