There is no debate that puppies are cute and cuddly. Unfortunately, they’re just too eager to bite without warning. Learning how to stop puppy from biting is necessary if you want to enjoy hours upon hours of cuddling. Puppies are constantly trying to get acclimated to all of the new smells, sights, and surfaces around them. Biting is one way that they tell the difference between your finger and a chew toy. Your puppy needs to learn manners at this time because it is their instinct to nip and chew. Here are a few helpful tips on how to stop a puppy from biting your feet and hands.
How to Stop Puppy from Biting?
A common mistake people make is referring to this behavior as biting or nipping, when in fact, it is neither. “The behavior isn’t intended to hurt or scare or eat. The technical name is mouthing.” According to Anthony Newman, CPDT-KA a certified pet dog trainer in NYC. Dogs that use their mouth like a hand to grab or tug, are usually doing so intending to play chase or tug. However, this behavior should not be discouraged. Some soft mouthing is allowable because it teaches your puppy how to use its mouth gently. The term for this is called Acquired Bite Inhibition (ABI), which they’ll keep with them forever.
Why Do Puppies Bite?
Sniffing and testing are how puppies become familiarized with their environment. Just like babies, a puppy becomes familiar with its surroundings by performing a taste test and putting the lot in his mouth. Don’t be surprised when you come home and your puppy is biting and chewing on items they’re not supposed to, like shoes and pillows. A simple explanation of why your puppy continues to bite no matter what you do is the fact that they are teething. Therefore, aggressive puppy biting and growling is not a sign of an out of control dog, it just means that he’s in pain and trying to find relief.
Make Playtime Fun and Productive
Take into consideration that your puppy is living in a human-dominated world. Therefore, it is up to you to figure out the best way to communicate with your little companion. Setting boundaries by interactive play is an awesome way to stimulate your best friend’s mind as well as build a bond. The Nylabone Puppy Chew Teething Pacifier is a sturdy toy and a suitable device to use when figuring out how to stop a puppy from biting, fast. Playing with your puppy is important. Therefore, playtime should be fun because you will get to know and understand each other and gain a mutual relationship. When your puppy nips and takes you for a chew toy, you should let out a little cry as if in pain, which lets him know that he’s nibbled too hard.
Offer Your Puppy Alternatives
When you provide your young companion with alternatives, it allows him to satisfy his urge to chew, but also helps keep undesired behavior in check. This technique is critical in early training. “As soon as his teeth unlock, immediately readdress his attention to a fun, squeaky toy, rope tug, ball or whatever his favorite is,” according to Newman. The Nylabone Teething Puppy X Chew Toy is a tasty, beef-flavored toy that prevents dental issues and is a great substitute to your valuable household items.
The best way to encourage new as well as positive behaviors is to provide your pup with plenty of alternatives. Any teething puppy will love the KONG Puppy Teething Stick Dog Toy that offers a strong, rubber surface that can put up with hours of chewing and play. This toy comes with a hollow interior, which can be filled with your pup’s favorite treats for added intellectual stimulation. For example, I like to stuff it with frozen treats such as veggies and fruits, which helps to soothe tender gums. It also adds extra nutrition for your four-legged companion.
Providing proper items to chew on—specifically one that couples as a yummy reward—will teach him that good behavior is surely worth it.
Emphasize Good Behavior
Discouraging bad puppy behavior with a tasty treat is a great way to show him what’s chewable and what’s not. Remember to incorporate positive reinforcement when your pup chooses a chew toy over your feet, hands, or favorite shoes. Positive reinforcement with treats is a better way to promote good follow-up behavior than punishment. Dogs thrive on positive attention, which encourages continued good behavior. Owners need to follow through with any prize in the form of interactive play when attempting to figure out how to stop a puppy from biting.
Because interactive attention is what puppies crave, do not expect them to go off and entertain themselves with a toy, or even relax on the couch. Consistency is key when attempting to remedy aggressive puppy biting. Therefore, continuous play will encourage shared feelings of trust as well as gratification.
Make Chewing Difficult
Unfortunately, puppies have plenty of wrong choices when it comes to chewing, but it is hard to find toys that are both exciting and durable for your little companion. The variety and taste appeal of the chew items are vital when it comes to puppy biting. Therefore, a natural and long-lasting choice like USA Bones & Chews Elk Antler Split Dog Chew gives your pup the best of both worlds. Your pup will stay busy for hours with the proper chewing challenge, which will also promote proper manners.
You cannot expect a puppy that’s only a few weeks old to know what is acceptable human behavior. When you’re in the process of figuring out how to stop puppy from biting, make sure to provide plenty of chew toys that give him different varieties, tastes, and textures. Remember, patience and love are the keys. Before you know it, your puppy will chew his toys rather than your hands, feet, clothes, and shoes.