Is Your Puppy Biting?
If your puppy has been separated from his mother and littermates too soon, he will not have learned some important basics, so it is up to you to help him through these trials.
The ideal time to adopt a puppy is when they are over two months old. Three months is better and four months is best. The litter teaches them when they are too rough in their play time, and it is best that the littermates complain about and take action when those sharp puppy teeth bite too hard. You may think it is real cute when he is a little puppy gnawing on your fingers, but when your dog is eight months old, or bigger, it won’t be so sweet then. Try to find puppy teething toys. There are even some that you put in the freezer that will make the puppy’s gums feel better.
It’s natural for puppies to bite and use their mouths, but you want to make sure you catch him and exchange your hand, fingers, or foot with a proper chew toy. Company will not appreciate those sharp little teeth gnawing on them, and you don’t want anyone to even suggest your puppy hurt them, or drew blood from being too
rough. Do you hear law suit?
You can take the place of his littermate. Don’t scoff. Keep an open mind. When he’s playing with his littermate and he bites too hard, his playmate will yelp, which will make him release his mouth. So when he is playing with you, and he bites your hand too hard, let your hand relax and make a yelping sound, or say OW real loud. He should release you. For at least 20 seconds, ignore him. He’ll get the message. Then you can start playing again.
Whatever you do, do not pull your hand away when he has bitten you too hard. If you don’t let your hand relax, he could interpret this to mean that you want him to chase you. Don’t let him think it is fun to chase and bite. And if he continues with this behavior for more than three times within a 15-minute period, he needs a time out.
If your puppy belongs to the group of herding dogs, you may experience him nipping at your feet or ankles when you are walking together. Make sure you bring a toy along for your walks. If he nips or bites your foot or ankle, STOP walking. Offer him the toy. When he grabs the toy, praise him. He will soon understand that nipping your feet is a no-no, but chewing on the toy is the way to go.
It’s okay for him to mouth you without using his teeth, but you want to avoid biting which could become a very bad habit that may require a professional trainer to help him “unlearn” that lesson. You might want to teach your puppy a new command, such as “let go”. Use it often when you are playing games like tug-of-war so he understands when to let go, and not to be over-aggressive.
It would be very beneficial to take your puppy to a dog park so he can interact with other puppies, dogs and people. Socializing with other puppies and dogs will help him understand when he is being too rough. Those other puppies and dogs will put him in his place.
Remember, to make a positive impression on your puppy:
- Be calm, gentle.
- Never yell at your puppy during any type of a training session.
- Praise him and give him a treat when he does the right thing, even if he gets it half right.
- Show him over and over again.
- Keep lessons short.
- Use short commands.
Don’t forget to document your puppy’s progress in your The Puppy Baby Book. And, if you need additional pages for your puppy book, check out the Blank Template Package.