How to teach your puppy not to bite

How to teach your puppy not to bite

No more bites.

The arrival of your puppy at home, in addition to great joy, can also bring us certain challenges that we did not have contemplated, such as when we begin to find our favorite slippers and chewed cushions.

But this does not mean that you should say goodbye to your things or hide them, but rather that we must understand why he is biting everything he finds and begin a process of education and training. In this way we will enjoy both the puppy and our things.

Why do puppies nibble?

Chewing is a natural behavior for dogs and most puppies do it even more when they are teething because it bothers them.

This behavior may also be motivated by exploratory behavior, which is part of normal learning until about 12 months of age. Our puppies “know” through smelling, biting, digging, etc.

Other causes may be boredom, not spending enough physical and/or mental energy since there are more energetic puppies than others, anxiety and/or frustration and even in certain cases just to get your attention.

It is crucial to know what is causing your puppy’s chewing in order to know how to manage this behavior.
What to do if he overbites everything he finds in his path?

Keep in mind that if your puppy is biting excessively, it may also be due to boredom or stress and, in this case, he may need more games, exercise and/or physical activity to consume part of his surplus energy. Be sure to stimulate him physically and mentally and avoid long periods of boredom. This is a good time to have training sessions; It will help him calm down and build a stronger bond with you.

If you find your puppy chewing on an object that he shouldn’t, stop him with a forceful and firm “No” or by making a loud noise, but never hit him or call him by his name. His name should always be associated with something positive so that when you call him, he goes to you. When he reacts and stops biting what he shouldn’t, give him his favorite toy and when he starts to nibble on it, reward him with a treat that he likes and/or giving him some affection. In this way you will help him to redirect his need to bite towards the objects that he is allowed.

But if you find your shoe chewed 1 hour after your puppy has done it, do not try to punish him, since he will not be able to associate the punishment with the fact that he has bitten it. Sometimes it may seem that when you scold him and wave the shoe in front of his muzzle he makes a “guilty” face, but in reality all he does is adopt a submissive behavior before an owner who yells at him, but does not know why.

What can you give him to nibble on?

In most cases, the habit of chewing can be controlled by making a change towards objects that you allow him to chew, such as toys, but you have to choose them well. Never use anything that looks like something you don’t want them to chew on. If you offer him old shoes or clothes as toys, he won’t be able to tell the difference between these and the ones he shouldn’t chew.

Since your pup is teething, a great idea is to freeze a stuffed toy or make frozen treats in ice molds. This will not only give him an appropriate toy to take it out on, but it will also soothe his sore gums.

You can also find several specialized toys for puppies that consider their need, intensity of their bite and gum pain.

What to do when your puppy bites you?

If you are playing with your puppy and he starts to bite you, even slowly, say a forceful, firm and direct “NO” and immediately stop playing with him and disappear from his reach for 1-2 minutes. When you return, play with your puppy again without remorse or grudges. Repeat as many times as necessary until he understands that if he bites, the fun is over.

It is extremely important to correct this behavior because although he is little now and it may not bother you as much that he bites you, when he is an adult this game will no longer be as fun and by then it will be even more difficult to change.

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By Lee Chun Hei