How to Stop Your Dog from Chewing Your Blinds

Penny the husky playing in the vertical blinds!
Penny loves playing with the vanes of Vertical Blinds!

Dogs are our best friends. They don’t talk much, judge only with an inquisitive eye and cuddle better than any human could, but I’m willing to bet you a Milkbone that this isn’t the first time that you’ve Googled the many ways to contain your furry friends’ penchant for destruction. If you have a puppy problem with keeping your window coverings safe from the wrath of your doggies’ paws and jaws, we’re here to help!

Stress / Separation Anxiety

Believe it or not — and your Furbo or Petcube can confirm this — your dogs basically do what they normally do when you’re there even when you’re not. However, those with separation anxiety have an emotional challenge to overcome. Since their species evolved as pack animals, they crave companionship and attention. They need to be around other beings to feel truly at home and comfortable. If you and your family have a close relationship with your dog (not just being part of the Christmas photos) then it’s going to be harder for them to grasp where you are going, how long you’ll be gone and if you’re coming back. Understanding how your dog’s brain works in relation to your existence is essential to learning about their anxiety. Adding another dog, hiring a dog-sitter, or consulting your vet may be some things to consider to help manage your little buddy’s stress.

Pitbulls stare at camera in living room
Duke and Sarah might be up to something…

Excitement and Energy

Have you ever been so happy and squeezed your teeth together so hard that you gave your jaw muscles a charlie horse? Or bit your cheek because your food was so delicious that you didn’t care to differentiate it from your meal? You JUST CAN’T control yourself! That’s how your dogs feel. With a lack of opposable thumbs and a quadrupedal frame, their mouth is really the only way of ‘squeezing’ in excitement. Not to be confused with canine ADHD, their hyperactivity may just be because they missed you and are excited to have you home.

The Solution

No window shade is fully “dog-proof,” but here’s a few tricks and tips to help keep your dog chewing their toys and not your blinds:

Leave home quietly and return quietly so you don’t startle, spook, or heighten your pooch’s stress energy levels.

Exercise and playtime with other dogs lets your pup let off steam and learn how to build relationships with their own kind.

Better toys mean longer-lasting amusement, less money spent and create a connection between your canine and their favorite stuffed animal. Multipet has some of the highest-rated pet toys on Amazon, with prices to howl about.

Citronella dog collars are a much more humane deterrent than the dated shock collar typically used to prevent incessant barking. They can also help stop Fido from destroying your interiors.

Enroll your dog in a local training class so they can learn how to behave from a pro and be with other dogs who are learning as well.

Give them melatonin after exercise and a hearty meal to help get them on a regular relaxation and sleeping schedule.

While many of these also apply to children, let’s both hope your human kids aren’t gnawing on ANYTHING except their food. Keep everyone’s safety in mind with cordless blinds, free of dangling lift cords which can be a potential to hazard to children and pets alike.

The Replacements

Ever come home to this:

Dog destroyed wood window blinds
It’s always the cute ones…

We hope not. But if you had purchased your window treatments from us, you’d be in luck! SelectBlinds.com’s 5-Year Unlimited Warranty keeps you covered (literally) even if your dogs get so bored with their toys they take to the blinds. Just call us up, let us know your story (seriously, we love good stories) and get a warranty replacement in less than 10 days. Coupled with the above tips, that should keep your window treatments safe and sound!

If you’re handy, or if your warranty has expired, you can order replacement slats for your Venetian-style window coverings (horizontal wood, faux wood and aluminum minis). See how easy it is to DIY your way back to perfect window shades by watching this video on How to Change the Slats on Your Window Blinds.

If your hound has been harassing your blinds, call our self-help hotline (at 888-257-1840, via live chat, or email). One of our Window Treatment Therapists will be happy to help talk you through the steps of mending not just your blinds, but your relationship with your dog!

Wait till You See This NASCAR Fan’s Monster Collection!

Ultimate NASCAR fan shows huge collection in basement man cave

This is just one of two rooms NASCAR super fan Glenn Zabransky and his father have transformed into living shrines to the sport. From die-cast mini car replicas to actual full-size tires and car hoods, their monster collection of all-things NASCAR numbers in the thousands. Photos courtesy of Glenn Zabransky

Glenn Zabransky lives and breathes NASCAR. And we mean LIVES. AND. BREATHES. IT.

Just take a look at the formidable collection he and his father have amassed over the last 28 years since Glenn saw his first race at Pocono Raceway (now a super speedway) in Pennsylvania, when he was just five years old. Hard to believe he could squeeze anything else in, but we were pretty honored that one of his most recent additions were two #38 SelectBlinds.com Ford Mustang hero cards autographed by driver David Ragan with Front Row Motorsports.

Signed David Ragan #38 Nascar Hero Card with SelectBlinds.com Gear and Wrap NASCAR action photo signed by driver David Ragan in Select Blinds car

With a passion for the sport passed down by his grandfather and father, Glenn, who hails from New Jersey when he’s not traveling the country from track to track during race season, started collecting die-cast cars as a kid. His dad, he says, would order a 1/64 scale car for him for every 1/24 his dad ordered, most of which were replicas of Dale Earnhardt Sr. cars (his dad’s favorite driver). The first thing Glenn bought on his own was a Terry Labonte Corn Flakes replica for $10,  snagged at Charlotte Motor Speedway in 1996. The collection truly started, though, he says, with a set of 1/24 scale Richard Petty cars from Franklin Mint.

“We have more than five hundred 1/24 scale cars, as well as a few hundred smaller cars.  In recent years we’ve expanded to sheet metal and other pieces of cars from actual races,” Glenn says. “I think I have ten or so pieces of metal (fenders, bumpers, trunk lids, etc.), about eight tires including a Dale Sr. 1994 Daytona 500 tire, as well as other odds and ends like valve covers and rims.”

The collection also includes  “odd-ball pieces like Davey Allison chili and Dale Sr. suntan lotion” Glenn says his mom has contributed.

His most prized items?

“We were able to obtain the actual seats my dad and I sat in at our first Daytona 500,” he says after the famed World Center of Racing underwent a remodel several years ago.

Now that’s cool!

No matter how cool his collection is, though, for Glenn, the coolest thing is that racing is a real family affair.

“The bond that racing has formed between my father and I is something that I’ll always be grateful for,” he shares, “and while my mom doesn’t really follow or care for the lower series, she’s probably been to at least 60 cup races or so.

“My wife knew when dating me that if she ever wanted to see me, she would have to  put up with the NASCAR aspect,” Glenn continues. “Turns out she’s super into it now. She even participates in my fantasy NASCAR league. The fact that she’s so on board and into it makes it even better.”

His now brother- and sister-in-law have also gotten into the sport. Together, the family has traveled to most of the tracks (Indianapolis Motor Speedway, surprisingly, is one pit stop still on Glenn’s bucket list), meeting every NASCAR driver at least once, including favorites Austin and Ty Dillon.

“Actually met them both and their dad, Mike, at Volusia County dirt track during speed week. My wife had on a few-years-old Austin Dillon dirt hoodie and was too nervous to ask Austin for a photo, so I asked and he was happy to do so. He knew we were pretty big fans.  Mike even offered us a beer.”

They also met Ken Schrader and Kenny Wallace that night, both of whom had beer to share, too.

“That was a fun night,” recalls Glenn with a laugh, adding that he’s also been impressed meeting Jimmy Johnson and “even” Kyle Busch. “It’s a great thing with NASCAR. You have the ability to interact with the drivers during the event, not just at some sports store signing autographs.”

NASCAR fan's black dog wearing blue #88 scarf at racetrack

The Zabransky family includes three, four-legged members, including Ralph, who was named after Dale Earnhardt Sr’s. father and racing patriarch Ralph Earnhardt.

It’s not just the drivers he loves; it’s the fans he meets, too.

“I love talking about [NASCAR] with other people, trying to ‘recruit’ new fans, and just every aspect of the sport,” he says.  To help in his recruiting efforts, he often gives away duplicate die-cast cars to young fans.

“I was lucky enough to attend a ton of races and have a dad that also collected. Those first cars that a young fan gets can shape their fandom for years to come. ”

He loves sharing stories of his most memorable races, too. His favorite? The 2001 MBNA Cal Ripken Jr. 400  at Dover Downs International Speedway following the September 11 terrorist attacks.

Glenn’s uncle, who had worked in the Twin Towers at the time, was with Glenn and his dad for the race. Glenn’s favorite driver then was Dale Earnhardt Jr., who won that day and after, went around the track with an American flag hanging out the window.

“An image,” reminisces Glenn, “that’s burned in  my memory. I’ll never forget it.”

Join Glenn this Memorial Day weekend and watch the No. 38 SelectBlinds.com Ford
Mustang and David Ragan recognize Corporal William G. Taylor
of the United States Marine Corps, who was killed in the line of duty while serving during Operation Iraqi Freedom. Twenty-six-year-old Cpl. Taylor of Macon, GA, was killed on Nov.
30, 2005 by small-arms fire while conducting combat operations against enemy forces in Fallujah, Iraq.

Taylor’s name will be displayed on the windshield of Ragan’s SelectBlinds.com Ford for the Coca-Cola 600 on May 26, where the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series will pay tribute to the fallen men and women of the U.S. military. Ragan’s car will also feature a red, white and blue patriotic paint scheme as part of NASCAR’s tribute.