Teething puppies have sharp teeth! Next to potty training, puppy biting is probably the second largest problem people encounter when getting a puppy. It can be very uncomfortable to be nipped – especially for children. You can find a way to gain control of your teething puppy by finding meaningful ways to communicate your expectations to the newest member of your family. Browse our training tips for teething puppies:
What is the cause?
It is important to have an understanding of why puppies bite. Many people believe that it has to do with teething when in face its a primary means of control. Puppies and their litter mates constantly bite each other as a means of establishing dominance. Consequently, the biting you experience is your puppy’s attempt at controlling or dominating you. By recognizing this problem you now have another important reason for working on and fixing it. Once you choose the perfect puppy and bring him home, you will need to teach your teething puppy that you are the leader of the pack.
Ways of correcting a teething puppy
When your puppy bites, the first correction should be a verbal one. You must tell your puppy “NO” in a stern, firm voice or use a sound like “Ow!” or “Ouch!”. Do not shout at your puppy as it can be counterproductive. If your puppy stops biting even for a second you should reward that with a praise like “Good puppy!”.
Some dogs may not respond to verbal commands at first. If this is the case try not to keep repeating yourself. Instead grab the puppy by the scruff of the neck or cheek and keep direct contact with the puppy and tell him or her “NO BITING”. Do not let go of your puppy until they have completely relaxed and become submissive to you. If the puppy continues to be relaxed pet them and praise softly. If the puppy begins to struggle again repeat as above. Never let go of your puppy if they continue to struggle. You have not resolved the dominance issue if you do.
You should never hit or slap your dog when they are bad. This can lead to more serious biting and lack of trust in their owner.
Be patient and consistent
Some teething puppies will bite more than others due to their experience with their littermates or because of their dominance level. Puppies have sharp teeth, but whether your puppy is a mild or extreme biter you must remember to practice patience and consistency. Puppy biting is normal, but if you do not correct it in the beginning the problem may not resolve with age. They can only learn about biting rules from their owners. Remember – your puppy will gain nothing by seeing you lose your temper or get angry at them.