The purpose of puppy biting training is for your puppy to be aware of their biting, NOT to stop it, as play biting for puppies is natural and necessary.
The first thing new owners need to be aware of is that puppy biting is part of the developmental puppy behavior and teething is part of their growing-up process. At most times, puppies bite without knowing the sensitivity of human skin and is never a sign of their aggressive behavior.
A puppy that is taught to stop biting all together will not develop awareness of their biting, which is called bite inhibition. The more a dog is aware of their biting the less dangerous they become as they grow older.
A well trained dog develops a very good awareness of their biting when they are young.
So how do I handle puppy biting?
1- When your puppy bites you, make a yelping sound, say “OW!” and as soon as he backs off then praise him right away with a “good boy” and gentle neck rub.
2- When he bites you try not to pull your hand or body away as this triggers chasing 3- Your puppy needs to be the one to back off, not your hand or you.
4- After he backs off, redirect them with something better to do. Show them a toy on the ground and reward them with play when they pick it up!
Things we Recommend
1- Give them toys or a hard snack to chew on.
A hard snack is great for them to be constantly biting something completely natural.
Playing with toys with you - we recommend toy play, including tug, can be a great way of increasing mental and physical enrichment and getting out some of those bite-y needs! Remember, toys are fake prey, and if YOU don’t play with it, it isn’t fun, so get out there and have fun with your pup!
Playing with Toys without you - Chew toy for quite times, settling down with a toy is emotionally satisfying and teaches them to occupy themselves.
2- Fulfill your puppies needs - Social, Sleep, Play, Mental Enrichment, Hunger, Potty
Puppies that are sleepy, hungry, bored, anxious, hyper or need to potty are much more likely to bite! Make sure you are meeting these needs every hour for the little guys, and gradually increase to every 4 hours by the time they are about 6 months old. Give them the space to interact with adult dogs.
3- If necessary remove yourself and ignore
If your puppy is not understanding, turn your back on your puppy or leave the room.
Puppies want your attention and want to play. By removing yourself they will start to understand how to behave better.
4- Make your home puppy proof
- Use barricades in order to have a puppy safe area of the house,
- Lock floor level cabinet doors and Protecting couches, furniture or walls.
- The best way to protect these are with natural sprays that DO NOT harm your puppy but it just gives them a bad taste so they won’t try that again.
Things that are recommended online and that we highly suggest you avoid
Don’t do... Shouting “no bite”
- This only works after specific training on that Phrase
- This Stops ALL the bite training which is not what you want
Don’t do... Tapping them on the nose
- The nose is a very delicate place filled with nerves and blood vessels.
- Popping them on the nose can make them fearful of hands and more likely to bite.
Don’t do... Press tongue down
this can hurt, and like popping the nose, often makes them afraid of hands.
Don’t do... Biting them back
This is just a bad idea as it puts your face right by the dogs teeth and makes a dog dangerous. The next time a kid comes close they could bite.
Best Recommendations from the New Puppy and Dog Owners Advice and Support Group
- Nippy puppies are usually telling you they are tired but don’t know how to nap. - Bully sticks and frozen Kong treats.
- Feeding puzzles!
- Making sure his energy is burned off!
- Do a subtle shhhh and tap him with your pointer and middle finger together right on the side of the neck. Then he gets physical and verbal commanding simultaneously (not hard but that’s how puppies learn from other dogs what is too much by getting a quick nudge there.)
If he settles down after the fact praise and pet but once he bites or gets mouthy- repeat. He will realize shortly. It's also important to teach puppies to not put teeth on skin and encourage them with training treats.
You can also take the help of a professional trainer or send your playful puppy to a puppy class if needed