Pets bring a lot of joy to life. I've had dogs for 20 years, and after losing the first two, I didn't think I'd have the energy for another. It's a lot of fun, but also a lot of work.

It was only three months after putting my last one down, at the young age of 10, that I started missing the unconditional love and companionship that comes with owning a dog. So, I brought a new friend into my life (see Riley pictured above).

We are now coming up on Riley's first birthday and it's been a year full of fun with less work than I imagined. Housetraining and socialization were a breeze, but there is one issue that persists -- CHEWING. Riley will chew furniture, the carpet, my toes, and even drag bathmats around the house.

It's a stage I'm hoping he'll outgrow, and I'm told he will. Meanwhile, I've been given several suggestions to combat this problem. Hot sauce on his favorite chew objects, a simple but firm "no", and, of course, limiting access to the forbidden chew objects. I seem to be making headway with those last two, but would welcome your advice in the comment section below!