Archive for the ‘Biting’ Category

Quick Tips To Prevent Puppies Barking, Biting & Chewing

Gemma | November 12th, 2006
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Early training can prevent common puppy behavior problems such as barking, biting, chewing and jumping up on people, and can teach necessary behaviors, such as walking nicely on leash.

Barking

Puppy barking is a common puppy behavior that’s not always easy to control, but if you begin when the puppy is young, you can teach it that being quiet or to stop barking on command is much more productive than endless yapping.

Never reward your puppy by giving the puppy attention or anything else it wants. Wait until the puppy is quiet, praise it, then give it attention, toys or treats. It’s often amazing how quickly a dog can learn that sitting politely produces more rewards than being noisy does.

Biting

Biting is another troublesome issue for many puppy owners. Puppies don’t realize that your skin is a lot more tender than that of their littermates, especially if you encourage them to nibble on your fingers, arms or toes.

Biting can be a matter of life or death for a dog, so your puppy should understand by the time it’s 4 months old that putting teeth on human skin is never, ever acceptable. Make some kind of noise – OUCH! – NO BITE! – STOP IT! and stop playing with your nibbling puppy immediately.

This works fairly well for people who have a relatively gentle, sensitive puppy. But with a roughneck pup, a firmer method may be needed. A puppy kindergarten class can be just the place to obtain that kind of guidance. Any time you have a puppy that can’t be discouraged from biting, seek the help of a trainer or behaviorist as soon as possible.

Chewing

Birds gotta fly, fish gotta swim and puppies gotta chew. Chewing can be one of the most destructive puppy behaviors, but it can be redirected. The simplest way to do this is to teach the give command. When your puppy learns early on to give up items graciously, it’s easy to take away items it shouldn’t chew on and replace them with canine chew toys.

Practice the give cue when the puppy is playing with something it likes but isn’t overly excited about. When the puppy releases the object, praise it, give it a treat if you want, and let it have the object back. You can also teach the puppy to let you open its mouth. When a puppy grabs something valuable to you or dangerous for it to have, you won’t have time to get something to exchange for the forbidden item.

Common Puppy Behavior Problems: Nipping Till It Hurts

Gemma | March 6th, 2006
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All pups start out doing everything possible to seemingly want to annoy you, get in trouble, or worse hurt themselves. But at the same time they are incredibly cute – they have to be so you’ll still love them when they are being really bad, which happens often while they are learning how to behave in a human world.

If your puppy is misbehaving, don’t fret. You can do plenty to help teach him the right way to act in just about any situation. Let’s look at a very common puppy problem of nipping and how to solve the issue. If you follow this approach then you can rest assured that your pup will stop nipping in no time at all.

The Nipping Problem: An Easy Approach

It’s natural for a puppy to nip while playing, and your puppy surely will do it to you, especially when he’s excited. But no matter how cute he is and how harmless it seems, you must put a stop to nipping the moment it begins.

Puppies need to learn that their teeth should never touch human flesh, even in play. This will pay off when your dog grows up he’ll be less likely to bite anyone, especially if you have a big dog. And even the smaller breeds can give a good bite if the nipping behavior is not taken care of.

When you play with your pup, redirect his biting behavior to his toys, especially soft plush toys that have a satisfying give in his mouth and have rubber toys that you can stuff with treats to engage his interest and his teeth.

Even if your puppy is as young as 8 weeks old, he can still learn that biting is not acceptable. If your puppy bites you during play, say ouch in a low voice, and remove your body part from his mouth.

If he continues to bite, walk away from him. If he follows you, step through a door and close him on the other side, but just briefly – don’t leave him alone long enough for him to get in trouble!

You’re teaching him that biting too hard makes the fun stop. He’ll learn to control how hard he bites so you’ll keep playing with him. As he starts to get the idea, you’ll notice that he bites hard with less frequency. Then you raise the bar, and start applying your ouch to softer bites, until he learns to keep his mouth off of skin completely.