Train Your Puppy To Stop Biting
It is natural for your puppy to bite. He will spend a lot of time playing and chewing, and this is a normal time to use his mouth. When your puppy plays with you or another member of the family, he will often mouth your hand and this can be painful. This article will show you the best way to stop a puppy biting.
Train Your Puppy To Stop Mouthing You
The first step is to stop the mouthing activity. You have to get your puppy to understand that human beings have sensitive skin so he must be gentle here. To do this you will have to teach him “bite inhibition”. This is the control shown by the puppy when mouthing and relates to the force that they apply with their mouths.
When puppies play together they will normally use bite inhibition. If a puppy bites another too hard, then there will be a pain yelp and the biting puppy will be shocked to hear this at first. This will normally stop them from doing it again.
You can use this behavior to train your puppy. If he bites you too hard when mouthing then you can yelp like a dog. Make sure that your hand goes limp at the same time. Your puppy should be shocked by this, and stop the mouthing. If he looks up at you or starts licking you then give him praise for this.
Now you need to see if he will do it again. Resume your play and if he bites you again then do the same thing with the yelp and the limp hand. Praise for looking up and licking. If he stops then don’t pay him any attention for about 20 seconds. Resume playing after this. Try this over a 15 minute period of time. The harder that he bites you, the louder your yelp should be.
Persist with this training and you should find that the bites will become less severe. Continue until your puppy will play gently with you, and will mouth your hand without biting it. If your puppy tries to bite you after this training, then give him a chew bone or something else that he can bite.
Prevent Biting Situations
Some puppies will want to mouth on the hands of people when they are being stroked. If your puppy does this, then have some treats in your other hand so that you can distract him from biting you when you stroke or touch him.
Avoid playing wrestling games with your puppy. These types of games can make him aggressive, and the chances of biting are increased. Instead you can play throw the ball and fetch and even tug of war. If your puppy can play tug of war without being too aggressive, then keep toys that you use for this game in your pocket. You can distract him with these toys if he tries mouthing your hands.
You do not want to “wind up” your puppy to make him want to play by slapping his face or waving your fingers at him. This is likely to have the opposite effect, and make him want to bite you.
How To Stop A Puppy From Biting
Some puppies will just want to bite your feet or your ankles when you are sitting down. Keep the tug of war toys handy again, and distract him with them if he tries to do this. If he does go for your feet then stop moving. You can start moving again when he has the tug of war toy.
If your puppy does mouth or bite you, then don’t suddenly jerk your hands or feet away from him. If you do this he is likely to lunge forward and try and grab you. Just let your feet or hands go limp. Limp body parts are no fun for a puppy to play with.
You do not want to stop your puppy from playing with you altogether. You will build a good relationship with him if you play regularly. The other members of your family should play with him too. You want him to be gentle at play but not stop playing.
Keep using the time out principle with your puppy if he tries to mouth you. This means that you will stop still and ignore him for up to a minute. You can yelp too even if he doesn’t bite you but you can feel his teeth on your skin. Once you have yelped, move away from your puppy and ignore him.
If the mouthing or biting behavior persists, then leave the room entirely for a minute (before you do this you want to make sure that there is nothing in the room that he can destroy when left on his own). Once the time is up, you can return to the room and give him some attention again.
This same time out principle can be used with a leash. When you are training him not to bite, put his leash on and let it hang on the floor. If he mouths you then take hold of his leash and walk him to an area where you can tie him up. Walk away from him for about a minute and then return to untie the leash.
The time out and ignoring training should work well, but if it doesn’t then you can resort to using a taste deterrent. You can obtain bitter apple sprays from your pet store for this. Spray the areas where your puppy likes to mouth you. If he mouths you after this, then just stop and wait for the bad taste to kick in. He really will not like this. As soon as he lets go of you give him praise. After a few of these bad taste experiences, your puppy should learn that he should control his mouthing behavior.
If things don’t go to plan then do not resort to hitting or slapping your puppy if he mouths you. This can cause him to want to bite you harder. Punishment training is never a good idea, as it is likely to make your puppy afraid of you.
If your dog is scared of you then this can lead to aggression, which you want to avoid at all costs. So don’t whack him one on the nose or shake him by the scruff, or do anything else that will make him scared, because the resulting behavior could be very unpredictable.
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DISCLAIMER: The information on this site is not intended to replace the advice of your own veterinarian or doctor. Should you think that your pet needs medical attention, please contact your local veterinarian.