ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

How to Curb Biting in Puppies

Updated on May 18, 2013

Puppies need chew toys

Source

How Bite Inhibition is Taught in Dogs

When a puppy is in a litter with its mother and its litter mates, important life lessons are learned. One of the most important life lessons taught is bite inhibition. Bite inhibition is generally taught when puppies are between the age of five to eight weeks. For this reason, it is imperative to not separate puppies from their mom and litter mates earlier than eight weeks. Do it sooner, and you may end up with a puppy lacking good social skills and with little or no bite inhibition.

Upon watching a litter of puppies one can see how bite inhibition is taught. When a puppy is playing too rough with a litter mate, the litter mate will make a sharp ''yelp'' and withdraw from playing. The sharp yelp is the puppy's way to say ''Ouch! I will not play with you until you learn how to play nicely''. With this happening over and over, the biting puppy learns that in order to play, it must inhibit its bite and therefore bite softly, being careful not to injure.

The same lessons are taught by the mother, which often resorts to meaningful corrections that the puppy quickly understands, She may growl and bare her teeth to tell the puppy to stop and if the puppy does not get the message, she may put her paw on the pup and give a a symbolic correction to let the puppy firmly know that he has to put a stop to his rowdy behaviors. Once the puppy is still and shows signs submission, (ears laid back, averted eye contact, and an overall ''I give up'' posture) the puppy is let go. The puppy at this point, most likely will shake its fur, and shortly should go back to playing, but hopefully this time with a kinder approach.

How You Can Teach Bite Inhibition

Now, that your puppy is eight weeks old and is at home with you, he should come with these important life lessons in his mind. However, this will not be the case if the puppy was removed from the litter earlier than eight weeks, or if the puppy was an orphan. In these cases, you will need to be some extra effort to make up for all the time this puppy has lost in being taught these important lessons.

If you got your puppy at eight weeks, he will have learned the basics of bite inhibition, but now he will need to refine them with you. Humans have a more sensitive skin than puppies, and therefore the puppy now must learn that not only he has to apply his bite inhibition with humans as well, but also be even more kind. It therefore helps to apply the same life lessons its mom and litter mates applied in a similar way.

So let's say puppy comes near you and nips your hands, you will say a loud ''awrrp''! like it really hurt bad, and suddenly withdraw playing by turning your back to the puppy and become still as a statue. Make sure your ''awrrp'' so loud and sudden that the puppy will remain surprised and startled stopping the behavior. When the puppy stops nipping, quickly give your puppy a toy to re-direct its nipping somewhere else, explains animal behaviorist Patricia McConnell. This will teach your dog that biting you is no fun and that the toy instead is. Repeat multiple times until your puppy grasps the concept.

If your puppy still engages in biting, then make the ''Awrrp'' noise and leave the room suddenly. Your puppy will soon learn that upon biting he loses his favorite playmate and it is no longer fun.

Your puppy is not acting aggressively upon biting, but is simply playing a little bit too rowdy. Some puppies can be rambunctious, and sometimes obnoxious in their behaviors. They need to be taught calmer behaviors and that upon acting rowdy all play and attention suddenly comes to a halt.

A main problem encountered in nipping puppies is that upon nipping, the owners instinctively draw the hand back which in a puppy's mind this is an invitation to play. This often incites the puppy in more nipping and biting.




Some Tricks of the Trade




  • Spread some frozen butter on your hands and praise your puppy for licking. You want to teach your puppy alternate behaviors to biting, and praise them warmly so you can put your puppy up for success.
  • Never engage in games that encourage nipping, do not stimulate your puppy to bite by waving your hands near him, rather give him plenty of toys to play with.
  • If you puppy is teething, get a piece of clot and make a knot in it, wet it and freeze it, then give it to the puppy, this will sooth the gums and provide several minutes of entertaining chewing, but please monitor him at all times.
  • If the nipping is real bad and accompanied by growling you may want to take your puppy to a dog trainer to learn some basic manners.
  • Invest in the best chew toys: a frozen Kong may work wonders in keeping a puppy entertained for some time!
  • If your puppy is biting on your clothes or ankles, stop moving. Moving stimulates playing whereas standing skill ends it, suggests clicker training expert Karen Pryor. For more on this read how to stop a dog from biting on pant legs.
  • Work on hand feeding your puppy. This will teach your puppy some good manners by taking the food from your hands politely. Learn to say ''gentle'' and give the treat only when the puppy is being kind, then later on, say the word ''gentle'' when the puppy is engaging in nipping and if he stops, give a treat to reward. For more on this read how to train your dog to take treats gently.
  • Don't encourage rowdy play and wrestling.

So cute, but so nippy!

Source

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • Miss Lil' Atlanta profile image

      Miss Lil' Atlanta 

      7 years ago from Atlanta, GA

      Really well written and helpful hub. I have had issues with teething and biting with all of my dogs as they were going through their puppy stages. Sometimes the biting was okay and just playful, but othertimes the play biting needed a bit of calming down to it.

      The puppy teething is really what I'v had more issues with; one of my dogs even chewed my carpet from the floor the first day that I brought her home lol. I just couldn't get angry at that adorable, little, innocent puppy face though. Lol

    • suejanet profile image

      suejanet 

      7 years ago

      I guess I was really lucky, my dog never had this problem.

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)