According to the Center for Disease Control, about 4.5 million people are bitten by dogs each year in the US. It seems to be a whopping number, so how to train a puppy not to bite? There are many ways out there, but in this article, Noble Pawtrait will show you three simple methods to prevent your dogs from contributing to this dog bite statistic.
Why Do Your Cute Puppies Bite A Lot?
Why do puppies bite so much? As a curious, fussy baby, your small cute dog may bite everything. He views biting and mouthing as a way to explore the surrounding world. Moreover, in most cases, it is normal when your puppy keeps biting, especially when he is experiencing an uncomfortable teething process between 2 and 3 months.
Why do puppies bite so much? Image: Pets at Home
Besides, when close to his siblings or mothers, your pup often uses his teeth to instigate play and attention. If your puppy falls into herding breeds, he is predisposed to herd, nip, and chase fast-moving things. Though his peers and mom might teach him a few things, now you need to continue the process, including teaching him not to bite humans.
What To Know About Bite Inhibition?
One of the first things you should do is to teach your puppy to control his mouth or, in other words, know some bite inhibition. Bite inhibition is a learned response in which a dog consciously keeps his biting force under control.
Your puppy probably gets a basic foundation of this behavior by learning from his little mates and mothers. When pups are nursing, their mother will stand up and leave if one pup bites too hard. And when playing with their siblings, puppies will yelp and cease playing if one of their siblings gets too rough.
Methods To Stop Your Puppy From Biting
This biting behavior is only temporary during your puppy development, though it requires you to spend time and effort stopping this nasty habit. Below are three ways for you to train your puppy not to bite.
Make Your Puppy Bite Other Objects
If you want to stop your puppy from biting, let’s try the redirection method. Whenever your dog bites your hands or legs, you can redirect his attention to other things. For example, give your dog a play toy when he bites you. You can move the toy around, make noises or do anything exciting to encourage him to play with the toy.
Puppy bites a pant leg. Image: petmd
If he shows no interest in it, just ignore him. Make everything boring by staying still. Many choose to walk away from their too rowdy puppy, which only exacerbates the problem. Any moving objects, such as your pant legs, are more appealing to puppies than something still.
Allow Your Puppy To Socialize More
Allowing your pups to socialize more with people and other dogs can help you with puppy bite inhibition training. Many studies have revealed that dogs with improper socialization tend to develop behavioral problems. According to the Animal Behavior College, dogs getting insufficient human contact as puppies are more likely to be afraid of people later in life. Thus, it is never too early for your pups to start socialization.
Puppies need more socialization. Image: squarespace
Socialization is not merely necessary for your puppy’s social development but also facilitates your dog bite inhibition training. You can let your puppies learn from their friends. Dogs are pack animals by nature, so they can observe and learn things quickly from their peers.
Use Clicker Approach For Bite Inhibition
It is advisable to use a clicker approach to teach your dog bite inhibition since it allows you to mark good behaviors consistently. The clicker sound itself can function as a cue to let your dog know that he is doing something right. When placing your hand next to his face, click and give him a treat if he doesn’t bite you.
The clicker approach helps with bite inhibition. Image: thegermanshepherder
Remember to click and give your puppy a treat for small inhibitions and increase the stimuli step by step. Your goal is to teach your dogs exactly where their limits are. If you are consistent, you can succeed in training your puppy not to reach out and bite any moving objects.
The Final Thought About Puppy Biting
Many of you may opt for other methods such as yelping at your puppies when they bite to make them stop. However, your yelp shows that your pups are hurting you. This yelping method may not work for all dogs because some will feel over-stimulated, and the biting problems worsen. Hence, you should use this method cautiously.
Regarding teaching bite inhibition, it can be time-consuming and require your patience. Whether you adopt the redirection or clicker training method, you may feel discouraged entirely at the beginning. However, train your puppies gradually, and they will understand how to interact with humans without using their sharp teeth.