I bet if you are reading this, you happen to have a new puppy with sharp little teeth who is fond of biting pretty much everything. That probably has included your family’s hands and feet, and probably any loose shoes lying around, if not even the furniture.I have listed a few good ideas for helping you deal with your puppy’s biting and chewing stage.
- Be sure to get some chew toys for your new puppy. He’s teething, so he’s going to have to bite something, and these chew toys are the perfect substitutes for your hands and feet. As you start playing with your puppy and he gets too rough, stop him by placing your hand over his mouth to hold it shut. You should keep his mouth closed until he becomes submissive and accepts your hand over his mouth without struggling. He may squirm around because he won’t like his mouth being held shut-so soothe him with a calm voice and hold him still with your other hand. Without raising your voice firmly tell him “no biting”. You want to use the calm but firm voice so he doesn’t become nervous and continue resisting longer. The calmer he stays, the quicker he’ll become submissive. Once he has become submissive and stopped struggling, it is time to remove your hand from his mouth, and offer him his chew toy as a wonderful substitute to human flesh. Give him praise as soon as he starts to chew on the toy.Every time you play with the pup, repeat giving him the chew toy as needed and he will soon associate the praise-the positive reinforcement– with chewing on the approved chew toy.Stay patient and don’t get mad at your puppy for not learning quickly-it could take some time to get the idea across), and definitely be sure never to hit him for his playing rough and biting you. This type of negative reinforcement will hurt you progress with training your puppy by undermining his trust and confidence in you.For the best results, make sure the whole family knows to only use the positive reinforcement techniques. If some people are yelling or hitting the puppy when he play bites, this will undermine your own approach and cause the puppy to be confused.
- A good way to prevent household damage when you can’t supervise your puppy’s activities directly, is to keep him in his crate. If the puppy is allowed to wander the house without anyone watching he will surely attack his favorite targets. Always be sure to have some chew toys inside his crate for him to bite on while there.
- Use your common sense, and you can easily figure out how to limit access to many chewable items. For example, try keeping your shoes and slippers, etc. in a closed closet.
- The Mama dog uses a vocal trick to let the puppy know it is playing too rough. You can imitate her, by yelping with a very high pitched voice to let the puppy know he is biting too hard. You might feel sort of silly, but this is one way Mama Dog gets a puppy’s attention and stops the puppy from biting her.
- A more vigorous demonstration that you want him to stop biting is to hold his mouth shut with your hand and at the same time stare him in the eyes and give him a growl or snarl. You may have seen a Mama dog do this sometime or other.
- You probably won’t want to grab the puppy by the scruff of the neck with your teeth the way a Mama dog does, but there is no reason not to use your hand to hold him still and show him who is boss until he submits. Don’t stop the correction until he has really shown you he understands that you are the boss, by becoming submissive.
- In order to discourage your puppy from biting, don’t play rough house games (such as tug of war and wrestling) with him. I know from experience that rough playing with my puppies always led to a lot of bloody tooth marks on my arms and hands-it was fun but painful to play with my puppy. At the time I didn’t know better and was unaware that this was potentially a way to increase my puppy’s level of aggression.
Use these tips to get control of your puppy’s biting problem. Click here for more dog training tips www.BehaveDoggy.com.
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