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Your Puppy - Eliminating Biting Behaviors
a new puppy and bringing it home for the first time is a wonderful
experience for you but could be quite a daunting one for your puppy. He
may feel strange and unsure of himself at first. This is quite
normal. Make it a game to him with lots of praise as you
introduce your new puppy to your family. Praise is the most important
tool you can use when training your puppy. Puppies generally get very
excited and it's natural instincts tell it to nip its leader as a show
of affection and respect.
Preventing biting and mouthing
Biting and mouthing is a common activity for many young puppies and
dogs. Puppies naturally bite and mouth each other when playing with
siblings, and they extend this behavior to their human companions.
While other puppies have thick skin, however, humans do not, so it is
important to teach your puppy what is appropriate, and what is not,
when it comes to using those sharp teeth.
The first part of training the puppy is to inhibit the biting reflex.
Biting might be cute and harmless with a 5 pound puppy, but it is
neither cute nor harmless when that dog has grown to adulthood.
Therefore, puppies should be taught to control their bit before they
reach the age of four months. Puppies normally learn to inhibit their
bite from their mothers and their littermates, but since they are taken
away from their mothers so young, many never learn this important
lesson. It is therefore up to the humans in the puppy’s life to teach
One great way to inhibit the biting reflex is to allow the puppy to
play and socialize with other puppies and socialized older dogs.
Puppies love to tumble, roll and play with each other, and when puppies
play they bite each other constantly. This is the best way for puppies
to learn to control themselves when they bite. If one puppy becomes too
rough when playing, the rest of the group will punish him for that
inappropriate behavior. Through this type of socialization, the puppy
will learn to control his biting reflex.
Proper socialization has other benefits as well, including teaching the
dog to not be fearful of other dogs, and to work off their excess
energy. Puppies that are allowed to play with other puppies learn
important socialization skills generally learn to become better members
of their human family. Puppies that get less socialization can be more
destructive, more hyperactive and exhibit other problem behaviors.
In addition, lack of socialization in puppies often causes fearful and
aggressive behaviors to develop. Dogs often react aggressively to new
situations, especially if they are not properly socialized. In order
for a dog to become a member of the community as well as the household,
it should be socialized to other people, especially children. Dogs make
a distinction between their owners and other people, and between
children and adults. It is important, therefore, to introduce the puppy
to both children and adults.
The best time to socialize a puppy to young children is when it is
still very young, generally when it is four months old or younger. One
reason for this is that mothers of young children may be understandably
reluctant to allow their children to approach large dogs or older
puppies. This is especially true with large breed dogs, or with breeds
of dogs that have a reputation for aggressive behavior.
Using trust to prevent biting
Teaching your puppy to trust and respect you is a very effective way to
prevent biting. Gaining the trust and respect of your dog is the basis
for all dog training, and for correcting problem behaviors.
It is important to never hit or slap the puppy, either during training
or any other time. Physical punishment is the surest way to erode the
trust and respect that must form the basis of an effective training
program. Reprimanding a dog will not stop him from biting – it will
simply scare and confuse him.
Training a puppy not to bite is a vital part of any puppy training
program. Biting behaviors that are not corrected will only get worse,
and what seemed like harmless behavior in a puppy can quickly escalate
to dangerous, destructive behavior in an adult dog.
There are more
information articles on all aspects of dog training basics, dog health
issues, dog diseases and parasites,dog nutrition,dog grooming and
different dog breeds in the
basics dog training main article
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Training Your Puppy -
Eliminating Biting Behaviorsy