After reading this, you’ll probably never think about puppy training in the same way again. Hopefully you’ll start to look at training issues through your puppy’s eyes – and that’s when you’ll start to understand them and begin to understand how to stop your puppy from biting.
Millions of puppies are taught by their owners to gently mouth their fingers and hands. This is the most common mistake people make with puppies when it comes to mouthing, chewing and biting. That’s right, we are training our puppies to do something that we don’t want them to do later on! How odd!
And yet, this is what we do – we teach our puppy to “gently” mouth, “gently” bite…when the fact is we shouldn’t be encouraging them to mouth or bite at all! It’s not us (our hands, specifically) that our puppies should be chewing on!
How to Get Puppies to Quit Biting
• Always provide your puppy with chew toys, or other stuff to chew on (could be a piece of wood)
• From the very start, encourage your puppy to leave your fingers and clothes alone – OUT of their mouths!
• If your puppy mouths you, redirect them onto something else. For example, replace the finger he’s chewing on with a chew toy!
• If they continue to mouth you, then place them on the floor and give a little yelp noise to let them know that their sharp teeth can hurt and move away
• If they continue to mouth you or your clothes, take them calmly and quietly and place them into timeout for a minute or so.
Now, There’s a Couple of Things to Remember
First: When your puppy is only a few weeks old, you should give them several chances if they do accidentally mouth you. It’s really around the five-month-old mark that you must no longer tolerate any mouthing at all.
Second: When you call your puppy to you, make sure that you have something in your hand to put in their mouth. If you don’t, you are setting them up to fail. Humans give affection through our hands but puppies and dogs tend to use their mouths more so they need something to mouth when you are cuddling them!
Third: The last tip is this: When your puppy starts to mouth you and ignores the chew toy, stay calm and place them on the floor. Do not start saying “No!” or “No Bite!” in your most superior voice. (Another very old school training technique). This will only get them more excited… that’s the last thing you need!
Understanding your puppy is the key to developing an amazing relationship with them. When you’re able to see things through their eyes, you’ll start to see how your actions make them feel.
Where To Get More Puppy Training Techniques
I learned these tips from professional dog trainer, Doggy Dan’s video website The Online Dog Trainer. If you check out the site, you’ll see it includes a video and a section on mouthing.
Even more exciting is that Doggy Dan has a video series called, “Project Moses.” Doggy Dan adopts a beagle puppy named Moses at 8 weeks, then does weekly training videos with Moses all the way up to 1 year old. You get to see the entire training process! Click below to visit Doggy Dan’s Perfect Puppy Program:
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18 thoughts on “How to Stop My Puppy from Biting”
Great point about encouraging dogs to chew on us! I never really thought of that before.
I guess we feel that it’s just play, and that it’s pretty ‘cute’, especially when they’re just puppies.
I agree that we don’t think from a dog’s perspective, we just take it for granted that they think about things the same way we do, but obviously that’s not the case at all.
That “cute” thing is what gets us in trouble every time, right? 🙂
Hi i really found your website to be very informative…I just started building one too on the same topic…So it helps to see your which is so further along then mine…Your content is very well written and right to the point..I will be book marking your site to see your progress…My site is no where as good as your but one day I hope…All the best
I’ve been working on mine for about two and a half months, five days a week. So don’t worry – with time, yours will be great too! I’m glad you’re helping animals also. 🙂
I LOVE this post. So often times we as humans set our dogs up for failure from the moment we bring them home.
Educating yourself on how to train your dog is so very important to new dog owners. It takes dedication and lots of patience, but their wagging tails make it worth every second.
Thanks so much for the tips!
You’re welcome, and I’m glad you enjoyed this article. I definitely agree dogs are worth it!
Very good info about biting My puppy does bite all the time so I am going to try your method to stop her.
Hi Donna! What kind of puppy do you have? What’s his/her name? Let me know how you make out! One of my neighbors just got a new puppy and it starting biting my fingers when I pet it – I forgot how SHARP puppy teeth are! Thanks so much for the comment. Debra 🙂
My 12 week old Aussie/heeler mix is driving us crazy biting us our hands arms pants legs… I always give him a toy instead but I’d rather chew on me I hope with training he grows out of this thanks for the tips!
Hi Mary! Thanks so much for the comment. 12 weeks is still pretty young. Thankfully, puppies and kittens will naturally lessen their “ATTACK!” behaviors as they get older LOL. Yes, Doggy Dan’s website and training videos will definitely help. Please come back and let me know how you make out! And give your little sweetie a hug and a kiss from me. I bet he’s adorable. Debra 🙂
We’re having the same problem…
Those little puppy teeth are SO sharp! Debra
Our 11 week old female German Shepherd puppy won’t leave our 4 year old male GSD alone. He is so good-natured, he will only correct her (growl & nip back) when she invades his space while eating. Otherwise, she nips at his feet, ears and tail and makes him whine. Any suggestions on how to “help” him? He gives us a look like “Can you please get her off me?” Thank you in advance for any advice.
Hi Kim, I’m so sorry you’re dealing with this. I don’t currently have a great deal of knowledge on this one, so I’m going to refer you to Doggy Dan for help. Below you’ll find a link to his blog post, “Why You’re Struggling to Train Your Pup.” You might sign up for the $1 3-day trial of his website so you can see if you can get help with this specific issue. But in the meantime, be careful. When I was a kid we had a poodle named Pepi (adult). We got a new German Shepard Pepi kept bugging the Shephard constantly. The Shehard eventually bit Pepi in the head. Pepi survived, but it was pretty bad. Your older dog may not tolerate this much longer. You might try to keep them separated until you can get this issue under control. The only thing I can think of for advice is to distract the puppy with interactive toys. But go to Doggy Dan’s site – you need more help than I can offer. Please report back! Debra
I have a rescue 1 yr old puppy and he’s tried nipping at my leg and my hand when I’ve tried to stop him chewing on a tree sprout stump to save his mouth from getting hurt and I got abit scared of him biting on a regular basis he sometimes does this with toys or something he gets obsessed with what can I do to stop this from becoming areal issue??
Do you mean that he seems aggressive or mean? As a rescue, he could very well be having some behavior issues having to do with territory, fear, anxiety, etc. Here are several free blog posts from Doggy Dan that might help:
Helping a Rescue Dog with Anxiety: NEWLINKdoganxiety
Rescue Dog Resource Guarding (this is very common among rescues): https://hop.clickbank.net/?affiliate=shermand22&vendor=doggyd4n&cbpage=rescue-dog-resource-guarding
Rescue Dogs – Putting an End to Aggressive Behavior: https://hop.clickbank.net/?affiliate=shermand22&vendor=doggyd4n&cbpage=ending-rescue-dog-aggression&tid=RescueDogSeriesPuttingAnEndToAggressiveBehaviors
I hope these help! Please come back and let me know how he’s doing!
Hi Debra, we just got a female aussiedoodle puppy 3 weeks ago. She is very nippy, and sometimes she barks at us when we say “No!” She is 3 months old and also has separation anxiety. We have tried almost everything. Clothers with our scent, crate covers, heartbeat toys, letting her cry it out, etc, so any tips?
The nipping and barking likely all tie in to the anxiety issues. Here are some articles by Doggy Dan that I think will help:
Why You’re Struggling to Train Your Pup: https://hop.clickbank.net/?affiliate=shermand22&vendor=doggyd4n&cbpage=comprehensive-dog-training-program&tid=StrugglingtoTrainYourPuppy
5 Methods for Overcoming Dog Anxiety: NEWLINKdoganxiety
Helping a Dog’s Separation Anxiety: https://peoplelovinganimals.com/treating-dog-separation-anxiety-tips-to-help-your-dog-to-be-home-alone
I strongly suggest you consider taking a look at Doggy Dan’s Puppy Training Program(s) for the nipping, and all puppy behavior issues. It sounds like your little sweetie is having a hard time and needs extra help. Here’s a link to get to The Perfect Puppy Program:
I hope this information helps! Please keep me posted. Debra