Puppy Training

Training your puppy to stop biting & nipping

Training your puppy to stop biting & nipping | ThePetsClub
JAN 9, 2022

In this lesson, you'll learn how to correctly address your pup's nipping as it is one of the most common concerns of puppy parents.

Despite a well-known
misconception, it is absolutely important to play with your pup using your hands.
Like human babies, puppies explore the world by mouthing things.
Puppies play with us just like they used to play with their brothers and sisters, that is, using their front legs and their teeth.

The most important objective is to teach the puppy that people have very sensitive skin and that the puppy must be very gentle when using their mouth. If the puppy doesn't live through a biting experience, they won't possess the understanding that a human is a different species that may be bitten in a different way, closing the jaws with a different force.

A simple exercise

If the puppy bites a little too hard, the aim is to mark this action, explain it, and tell the puppy about it. For example, vou can give a high-pitched yelp using marker words like "Painful" or "Ouch!" and stop the game.

If the puppy stops biting upon hearing "Painful"or "Ouch!" and continues playing in a gentler way, we go on with the game. We say "good" or "perfect" and continue playing using our hands.

If after hearing "Painful" or "Ouch!" the puppy ignores you and continues biting, stop the game, take a time-out, take the puppy to a different room, and close the door for 5-7 seconds. In doing this we take from the puppy something that had been a source of pleasure for them until the moment they bit us too hard.

Of course, the puppy won't be able to understand this pattern after just a couple of times, but if you regularly play hand games, the puppy will understand that if they bite too hard, the game stops. They will thus learn to control themselves and their jaw- clenching power.

Distract your pup with toys

When you start a play session, always have a couple of strong and sturdy chewing toys on hand. If a game with your pup becomes too energetic or too rough and the pup goes to use their teeth, push a toy into their mouth.
Be patient. Playful mouthing is normal behavior for a puppy or young dog

Why does my dog play bite. What should I do?

Most owners are not really pleased when their dog bites their hands strongly or grabs clothes during a game. An adult dog bites much more painfully than a little puppy. Besides, It is harder to tackle adult dogs' biting because older dogs are bigger and much harder to control.

As a rule, painful biting is typical forthose adult dogs which were not educated to use their teeth properly when they were puppies.

Is biting during a game a sign of aggression?

Using teeth is a normal species-typical behavior of a dog, because teeth are one of the major tools for exploring the world. It is important that game bites do not injure the person and do not cause pain. Game bites, even serious ones,
are not signs of aggression but some dogs bite when they are scared. And sometimes it is hard to distinquish between game bites and bites which are followed by aggressive behavior.
In most cases bites are accompanied by a dog's body language saying that the dog is relaxed. The dog can wrinkle their nose, but their facial muscles will not look tense. Game bites are usually not as painful as the aggressive ones. An aggressive dog looks tense and they attack sharply and quickly.
If you consider your dog to be aggressive, the best you can do is to consult a qualified canine specialist.


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How to teach the dog not to bite when playing?

Dogs spend much time playing, chewing something or exploring different objects. Obviously, they like playing with people. Puppies chew our fingers and grab our legs because they explore the human body in such a way, as they don't have hands, they do it with their teeth. This behavior is cute for a 2-month old puppy, but it is not at all funny when the dog is 2 or 3 years old.
That's why it is very important to teach the dog to control their teeth and use them carefully when playing. There are several ways to teach a puppy to control the strength of a game bite. They are based on the fact that we
show the dog that our skin is very sensitive, and that's why it is important to be careful when playing. Besides, if you teach the dog to bite softly, it won't bite with force even in the most critical situations, for instance, when the dog is scared.
Puppies learn to control the strength of their bites when playing with other puppies. If you watch a group of dogs playing, you will definitely notice chases, attacks and struggle. And from time to time (not rarely!) the dogs grab each other with teeth during the game, sometimes - very strongly.
As a rule, the "victim" squeals and
stops the game; it is negative punishment in action! Meanwhile, the "offender" usually jumps to the side and stops. However, the game recommences soon. This is how dogs learn to control the strength of their bites when playing with each other. And if the dogs are able to learn when playing with one another, they surely can learn when playing with humans. That's why there's no need to ban
game bites completely, but if the dog hurts you with a bite during the game, abruptly cry out and stop playing. This
is supposed to be a signal for the dog
If the exclamations don't work, you can give a marker of improper behavior (for example, "No!") pronounced in a stern voice. Praise the dog if they've stopped biting you and started licking your
hand. Recommence the game. However, do not let the dog get over excited as they can lose control in this case.
If the squeals and the misbehavior markers do not work, take a break. If the dog strongly bites you during the game, cry out and ignore the dog for 10-20 seconds. If the dog continues to attack, send it to another room for 10-20 seconds or leave the room yourself

It is very important to show that strong bites end all the fun and only polite playing is appropriate. After that you can continue to play.

1. When the dog tries to grab you with their teeth, switch their attention to a toy or a chewing treat.
2. Dogs often grab people's hands
when they are scratched or squeezed. If your dog behaves in such a way, feed them with small pieces of a treat, while stroking or scratching. This will help your dog to get used to the fact that it is not necessary to grab people's hands when they touch them.
3. Encourage non-contact forms of
playing such as hauling rather than using hands. However, avoid overexcitement when the dog grabs hands instead of a toy - stop the game earlier.
4. Teach the dog to control their impulses using appropriate games and exercises.
5. Change toys so that your dog is
never bored with them and offer toys and treats which your dog can chew, instead of having fun with your hands or clothes.
6. Give your dog a chance to play with other vaccinated and friendly dogs. This will help to release the dog's energy and there will be no need to play rough games with you.
7. Give a sudden and loud yelp - very, likely it will make the dog stop. If it doesn't help, use a timeout once the
dog's teeth have touched your skin.
8. Do not provoke the dog to play by waving hands in front of their nose. By doing so, you almost provoke the dog to bite you.
9. Do not forbid the dog to play with
you in general. The game is an
essential way to build a trusting and close relationship with your pet. It is important to teach your four-legged friend to play correctly, not to discourage them from playing at all.
10. Do not pull your hand away when the dog grabs you with their teeth. Such movements look like encouragement of the game, and most likely the dog will jump forward to catch the "escaping prey".
11. If you pat the dog during the game,
you provoke them to bite more strongly. Physical punishments can also provoke bites and even cause real aggression.


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