Okay, so you brought in a new little pup as your new family member and the little guy is nibbling on your finger or toe or cloth all the time? You might often be thinking if it is a normal thing for a puppy to bite? To answer in a sentence, yes, it is certainly normal for pups to nibble on something or stick around biting your toe or cloth. It is all about the itchy teeth the little ones have got, just like a teething human baby.
What causes puppy biting?
Just as puppies start teething, their gums and mouth would pain and they would look to chew on something to get relief from the mouth pain. This is why puppies pick the habit of biting in their early ‘puppyhood’. But then, we just find everything that these little creatures do exceptionally adorable, don’t we? So we tend to ignore them nibbling around. However, this could encourage them to go on with the habit and they keep biting even after losing their baby teeth (puppies don’t really need anything to chew once they get their sharp, big-guy teeth). Thus, while normally adog bites due to teething in their initial period, as they grow up, it is the habit that becomes the reason for biting.
There is no fixed age for this puppy biting to start or stop. Usually, puppy teething starts when they are 2-4 weeks old and it may go on for several weeks- or months. For some puppies, it might be some 6-9 months until they get all their adult teeth in place. Bitter truth-you can expect your teething baby to go weird with biting during this period. And generally, this is the period when they are adopted. So don’t worry if the pup you just brought home doesn’t get tired of biting your toe or finger or furniture and stuff. Read on to know how to get their biting habit under control.
Importance of teaching puppies not to bite
Though it is actually normal for puppies to bite, letting them go on with biting whatever they like would ultimately let them be comfortable with biting people and things. Having a grown-up puppy biting around your toe or furniture or cloth with their razor sharp teethset would certainly not be the same thing as little puppies nibbling with their tiny teeth. Something that matters here is preventing the biting thing from becoming a habit. Especially, your pet should not be allowed to grow comfortable in biting a human, as it may actually develop into an unpleasant and troublesome habit.
An accidental dog bite would mean injections and medicines for a human; so the dog training holds even more significance in this direction. The importance of stopping dogs from biting only increases if you have a baby in your house.What is more? If they really get naughty, your house can turn into a total mess with cushion feathers flying around, carpet all scratched and end of curtains torn! Simply, in no way you want your pup to pick the habit into adulthood.
Moreover,training a grown-up dog to not bite would really be a tough call. Thus, in all sense,it is best to train your puppy not to bite in the initial period itself.
How can you teach your puppy not to bite your feet?
You can easily train your dog to stop biting while he is still a little pup. Beating puppiesis not at all necessary to train them. In fact, even if your puppy bites alot, the beating would serve no purpose as long as you are not conveying them the message that it is wrong to bite everything, especially, human.
You can train them in a number of ways.You just need a tiny bit of patience while they gradually figure out you don’t appreciate them biting you. Here ishow you can train your puppy:
Most basic and natural way of training a puppy is behaving with them the exact way as you would do to your baby when he or she does any wrong. Whenever your pup bites you hard or start to chew or scratch your furniture or carpet, you can say a firm, loud ‘no’. Generally, he will pause at the ‘No’. Once he stop, pat him and say ‘good boy’ and let him know you are happy that he stopped biting. When you repeat this often, puppies will understand that you say ‘no’ or scold him when they are doing anything wrong. Once they recognize this, they will stop doing things that you say no to.
Also, you can train your dog by letting out a loud yelping sound as soon as the puppy bites you. The yelp would startle the pup and would hesitate for a while. As soon as he stops nipping, appreciate him. Get playful and repeat words like ‘good boy’ or ‘good baby’.
While you play with the pup, let him gently mouth your fingers or toe. Just when he starts to bite, make a sound to show you are hurt, let your hands go limb and stop playing. Once you go limb, your pup will probably withdraw from biting for once. If he does, don’t pay attention to him for a few seconds and they you can start playing again.
Another thing you can try if going limb isn’t working is letting out a loud ‘Yip’ or ‘No’ and slowly walking away (don’t run). Don’t play for a few minutes while ignoring the puppy. After a while, get back to him and get playful with him again. Again, if he bites you hard, yelp and repeat the process. Don’t expect the puppy to understand this behaviour or pattern in one go (not even close). It would take several repetitions for a puppy to realise something is wrong about biting a human. Puppies will, eventually, understand aggressive plays are not good. They also start recognising the words ‘No’ or ‘outch’ that you use to show you are hurt. This process of making puppies realise the sensitivity of human skin is called bite inhibition. Once your puppy starts to bite you in a moderate manner and understand the pattern, you can carry on the process to make the puppy mouth you even more gently.
While you are training your dog, take note of not to repeat this process more than 5-7 times in a period of half an hour. If you do it too frequently, you might end up confusing the dog. Another thing to note is that while you are training your puppy not to bite, you should not withdraw your fingers yourself or run. Puppies have a strange chase instinct and by running, you turn their ‘chase-mode’ on. This would end up with your training reaching nowhere.
You can try changing the words you use if the ‘yip’ sound isn’t really working. Try ‘ow’ or ‘Outch’ instead. The yelping and going limb process is proven to be the most helpful process in stopping puppy bites.
Strong Chewy treats
Chewy Pet Treatsor pet toys do more work than you give them credit for. It plays an important role in training your pets. With chewy treats, you can train your puppy that chewing on treats and toysis okay but biting you is not. Getting your puppies a strong chewy treat can satiate their need to nip due to teething. It is, in fact, good for their dental hygiene as well. Seriously, Chewy treats for petsare the perfect ‘anti-biting’ solution!
On Marshallspetzone, you can find tonnes of chewy treats and toys for your little pups that can satisfy their tooth itch and keep your toe and cushions all good!All the chew toys listed on our site are quality checked and best in the market. Check out our products to find perfect happy treats and toys for your waggy babies!
When you let your pups meet and play with other puppies, they will be able to more easily understand how and when their bites hurt you. As they play with other puppies and start nipping around each other, one of the pups will yelp and take a pause from the play when the other bites too hard. Such situations would help them realize a new feeling- that biting inflicts pain. Socializing and letting them play with other puppies is the best way of teaching them bite inhibition. When this realisation is followed by your training, they will slowly figure out biting hard is a wrong thing and disliked. So, plenty of socialising- yes.
Contacting a professional or trainer if required
Generally, puppies do eventually learn not to bite from in-home training and socializing. But sometimes, they can go nuts and you may not be able to train them to not bite you. In such scenarios, it is better to handover the training to a professional. Pet training professionals will know the right means to train them. So if required, make no delays in seeking professional assistance.
Preventing puppies from biting furniture and household materials
Just like the process you followed to make them realise that biting you is not good, you can use the yelping method to prevent them biting and nipping on household materials. Getting a few good chew toys can go well for preventing them from biting household stuff as well.
You can also consider anti-chew sprays. There are various kinds of deterrent sprays available in market whose would repel dogs. You can check out Marshallpetzone.com and find good quality anti-chew sprays. You just need to spray it on your furniture and other stuff that your puppy tends to bite often. Keep the furniture sprayed for a week or two, until the pup eventually gives up trying to bite it.
Teaching puppies good habits
Just the way you train your furry baby not to bite, you can also train them to behave well. You should not discourage the normal playful behaviour of your puppy. You should stop and scold him only if he does something actually wrong. If you are playing and your puppy turns aggressive, stop playing and give a timeout. If he bites you, replace your hand or toe with a chew toy. Make them exercise regularly; the active waggy kids will have a lot of energy to burn. Take them for regular walks. You should appreciate them for the good things they do- for example, when they just mouth you instead of biting you.
Puppies love little gifts and treats. Imagine the excitement in their big puppy eyes when they get a new treat? Treats are good ways to appreciate and encourage your dog’s good behaviour. Wondering where to find some cool yet pocket-friendly treats and pet toys for your puppy? Why not check out Marshallspetzone? Not just for dogs, but you will find everything you need to take perfect care of your non-human family members. Let that be dogs, cats, birds or fishes- we have everything covered.
Ganga K kurup
An experienced and professional writer, working to search, create and present most appropriate content and information to those in need. Quite in love with animals and every creation of nature and exceptionally happy to share whatever knowledge I gained from my love and curiosity for the same. I believe in working to make the world a better place to live- not just for the human, but also for all the beings with whom we share this planet.