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When people bring a new puppy home they are often confronted by problems that were never expected. To understand how to solve the problem of a biting puppy you must first understand why a pup is biting.
When pups first move into a human environment it takes a period of time, usually a week or so for them to recognize their human family is now their new pack members. Puppies need to learn how to live with their new human pack members and it's the humans who need to educate them. Twenty five years ago I used to tell puppy owners to just grab the little buggers and shake them until they scream. If the pup lets go then you can praise it with a soft pat and “good boy.” Give him a food treat or a high value toy to play with. You can redirect the puppy by either tossing it a foot or two (not too far) or move it around in front of the pup in a manner that builds interest.
Once you get a pup to redirect onto a toy you are on the road towards teaching that puppy that there are more interesting prey items than your hands and legs.
If you or members of your family are in physical danger or are fearful of the puppy, seek the help of an experienced Certified Dog Trainer or Applied Animal Behaviorist immediately. Next time the puppy plays, if she bites too hard and gets the same reaction, she begins to realize that her bites can actually hurt other puppies and people. In more extreme cases of correction, an adult dog will jump on a puppy and pin it down on its back to really teach her a lesson; in most cases, this should not be replicated by human owners unless under direction and supervision of an experienced trainer. Due to this natural progression, puppies generally learn from adult dogs that biting is unacceptable before they are old enough to cause harm to other dogs or people.
If you have children, it is important that the puppy understands not to bite them, but it may not be appropriate for the children to participate in the training. If you are clicker training the puppy, click as soon as he withdraws her mouth from your hand or lets up the pressure.
Consider enrolling your puppy in a puppy training class, where your dog can learn essential skills while having fun. If your puppy seems unsure about the chew toy, try putting a little tuna juice or peanut butter on it to make it more enticing. Small breed dogs can inflict damaging bites as well; do not neglect to train your small breed puppy just because she will always be small.
This version of How to Get Your Puppy to Stop Biting was reviewed by Pippa Elliott, MRCVS on April 13, 2015. Puppies think they are playing with new friends and humans think the puppy is being aggressive. When puppies chase balls or run after sticks or bite your pant legs this is an example of prey drive not aggression.


In fact they can cut fingers and ankles if they latch on and you jerk your hand or leg away. It's our job to show the puppy an alternative behavior that satisfies the puppies drives to bite. Just don’t over do the praise because this can often put the pup back into prey drive and the biting will start all over again. When the game of tug is done correctly it becomes a tool that can be used in obedience training or agility training or one of the biting sports. Allowing puppy biting to go unchecked can lead to behavioral problems in adult dogs; a cute nip in a 10-pound new puppy can turn into a serious bite in an 80-pound adolescent dog. Young puppies often do not know how hard they are biting, and so they bite playfully without understanding how it affects others.
Adult dogs tolerate the (sometimes naughty) behavior of young puppies reasonably well, but they become less tolerant as the puppy ages. When selecting a training technique for your puppy, keep in mind the amount of time you are able to spend on the training and the appropriateness of the training method for your situation. Jerking your hands back in pain, while certainly a natural response, may actually encourage your puppy to play harder and continue biting.
If she starts to bite again, let out your yelp or stern rebuke and withdraw from playing again. When your puppy bites you, yelp loudly and remove your hand to signal that playing has stopped.
If you begin communicating that hard bites are unacceptable, your puppy may try giving softer bites. This process can take quite a long time, particularly with puppies that have a high prey drive. Playing rough with your hands is plenty fun, but it might be giving your puppy the wrong idea. Before you start playing with your dog, spray a taste deterrent on areas of your body and clothes that you dog likes to play rough with.[7] When your dog starts biting you, stop all movement and wait for her to react to the taste deterrent. After two weeks, your puppy will likely have developed a strong distaste for your hands and ankles.
A well-exercised puppy (exercised to the point of being tired) will not be as rough when playing with you.
It's sometimes tempting to want to physically punish your puppy by slapping, hitting, or waving your fingers in her face. You might not enjoy being bitten every time you go out to play with your puppy, but you do want to forge a real bond between you and your puppy, and playing is partly how you do this. Though an adult dog correction can look harsh to humans, adult dogs are quite adept at teaching puppies appropriate behavior.


The problem with this is this can often squishes the pups prey drive (which we use in training) and damage the bond between the dog and the owner. So there are times a human screaming is enough to teach the pup that what they are doing is unacceptable. The toys I use to redirect the pup from biting me are not the same toys that I leave in the exercise-pen with him during the day. Once you learn the game of tug you will also learn how to teach the dog to OUT the tug when you want it back. As I said, dogs and puppies need to learn to SPIT OUT the toy when told to do so and they need to learn to bring the toy back to you when you throw it.
Puppies usually learn that they're biting hard by playing with other puppies or adult dogs. She should be rewarded and encouraged to offer positive feedback that does not involve biting.
Encourage other forms of play that don't involve your puppy nipping at your fingers, hands, ankles, and toes.
The problem is that these responses can do one of two things: they can encourage your puppy to continue playing rough, or they can encourage your puppy to act out with real aggression. The first article he worked on was How to Make Baseball Cards, and his favorite has been How to Make Caffe Medici. The DVD The Power of Playing Tug with Your Dog teaches you how to show the dog that the only time a toy is fun is when he plays with you and the toy.
Puppies will nip and bite each other playfully until one puppy or dog is nipped too hard and gives out a high-pitched yelp. Stand up to stop playing with the puppy to further reinforce that her paper was not acceptable.
Physical isolation from the pack sends a strong message to the puppy that she has acted incorrectly.[3] If the puppy bites you again, get up and leave for 20 seconds. Continue discouraging your puppy's next-hardest bites, and so on, until she can play with your hands gently and control the pressure of her bite.
The victim will stop playing, and the puppy that bit the victim is taken aback and also stops playing momentarily.



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