It’s hard to look at any puppy and not be immediately smitten by his/her cuteness. Puppies are quite possibly the most adorable animals you’ll see anywhere in the world.
When we are around puppies, we just can’t resist playing with them, and we’re sure that’s the case for many of you out there as well.
For the most part, puppy play time is incredibly fun! Although, we have to be honest and say that bites, even coming from puppies, are not quite as fun to deal with.
Puppy bites are only going to become problematic as they grow bigger and more powerful. That’s why it’s best to discourage this habit as early as possible.
In this article, we will discuss why puppies like to bite and we’ll also talk about a way to get them to drop this particular behavior.
Why Puppies Like to Bite
To understand why puppies have an affinity for biting, it helps to remember what most people were like as kids.
Human babies have a tendency to grab hold of something and then immediately put it in their mouth. Babies don’t do that because they’re hungry. They’re just trying to figure out what that thing is and the way they’ve chosen to do so is to put said object in their mouth.
According to Purina, puppies behave the same way. They use biting as a tool for exploration. If they don’t know what something is, they’ll try to satisfy their curiosity by putting their teeth on it.
Puppies also like to play by biting. When they’re very young, puppies can’t hurt one another by biting so there’s no problem. Biting only really becomes an issue once their teeth come in. At that point though, they’ve gotten so used to biting that getting them to stop becomes a challenge as well.
How to Discourage Puppies from Biting
So, what can you do if your puppies have developed a biting habit?
The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) suggests teaching your puppy a technique known as bite inhibition. This dog training technique will teach him/her that biting hard, and just biting in general, is not good behavior.
To pull this off, you will need to play with your puppy until he/she bites your hand hard. When that happens, let out a high-pitched yelp that lets your puppy know that he/she did something bad. If your puppy stops biting after your yelp, praise him/her.
Continue playing with the puppy until he/she bites again and yelp in response as well. You can also put your puppy in time-out if simply resorting to yelping is not having an effect.
Keep playing with the puppy and only stop when a hard bite occurs. Remember to praise your pup if he/she stops the bite after your yelp.
Eventually, your puppy should get the idea that idea that biting leads to a stoppage in play while keeping things gentle will allow for it to continue.
It’s also a good idea to invest in different toys for your puppy. Give him/her different toys that demonstrate how playing can be done without biting. Use these toys to play with your puppy on a consistent basis as well.
Remember that some lessons need to be repeated numerous times before they stick, so don’t be disheartened if what you’re teaching isn’t resonating right away. After a while, your puppy will grow to understand that playing is great, but biting is unacceptable.
TAILored Pet Services’ professional dog walkers are not certified trainers, but you can most definitely count on them to help with teaching your puppy to stop biting. As soon as you sign up for our services, we will begin using the training method you prefer to teach your puppy. Please feel free to give us a ring at 425-923-7791 and you can also browse our website to learn more about our rates and the services we provide.