Your dog should not have a puppy biting or nipping problem once he reaches the age of 15 weeks or older.
Many dog owners who own dogs that are older than 15 weeks still struggle with the puppy biting issue. Many of them go so far as placing a muzzle on their dog’s mouth to combat biting.
By the time your dog reaches 15 weeks, you should have already given him proper training techniques and basic commands to get your dog to stop his annoying mouthing behavior.
If your dog is older or if you have adopted a dog that’s a little older than 15 weeks and is new to your home, then the following tips can help you get your dog to stop biting your hands and biting at your fingers:
1. Stop rough play
The first item on your checklist must be to discontinue playing all dog games that include roughhousing immediately. I realize that part of the fun of having a new dog is playing games like tug-of-war and wrestling, but unfortunately, this technique doesn’t work for many dogs. So, if you’re faced with an animal that is still not over his biting period, you have to stop these types of activities.
By playing these games, you are giving him the notion that he is allowed to roughhouse with you at any time he wants. You have to be very careful because you don’t want your dog to be hostile towards strangers and young children.
Your dog should never try to bite you in anger or behave aggressively.
2. Use discipline
While it’s OK to allow some light puppy biting, let me stress light biting or nipping, from very young puppies. Once your dog is older than 15 weeks, all forms of biting should be completely discouraged.
It’s one thing when your puppy is teething and tries to use your fingers as a chew toy. If that happens, give the puppy a “No Bite” command and then hand the dog a chew toy. This should teach your dog that it’s OK to chew on certain items.
But if puppy biting continues, you have to stop it. Whether it’s just a little nibble on your fingertips or hand that seems to be harmless, give your dog a firm command to stop biting and immediately pull your arm away.
Never hit or bite a puppy that bites you. That will only make your dog afraid. If your dog continues to try to bite your hand, stop what you are doing, and walk away.
Losing your attention should be enough to get your puppy to behave. If, however, your puppy continues misbehaving, you may have to resort to other methods.
3. Use firm commands
Use firm commands when required. This goes for puppies of all ages. There is nothing wrong with quickly giving a loud and firm “No Bite!” command if you feel a tooth at your hand.
There are two things to keep in mind here: Do not scream and scare your dog, and second, don’t stare at your dog’s eyes for an extended period when you are disciplining him. This can cause confrontation.
Using these simple tips, you’ll be able to eliminate puppy biting quickly.
4. Try a “shock method” to stop puppy biting
Lastly, if necessary, use a “shock method” to get your dog to stop biting. Keep in mind that I am not talking about anything harmful to your dog.
A spritz bottle of water fits the bill well. Use anything that lets you quickly spray at his little body or head when he bites, or nibbles should be enough to stop him from wanting to bite again.
Do not overuse this method. Often this method is all a pet owner will need to eliminate their dog’s mouthing issue. If it doesn’t, however, repeatedly spraying your puppy will not make it work.
Instead, redouble your training efforts. Eventually, your dog will learn not to bite you or chew inappropriately.
Kelly Marshall is a featured author on Oh My Dog Supplies. For more articles by Kelly visit Oh My Dog Supplies.