February 12, 2010

How can I train my dog to stop biting?

Filed under: biting dog,dog bites,dog biting,stop dog biting — Dr. Amber Reed @ 8:42 am

stop dog bitingA biting dog cannot be ignored. Left to continue this anti-social behavior dogs can become more and more aggressive. However, most importantly, serious dog bites are often met by serious consequences as large dogs that bite are sometimes put down. In many cases, your dog might be playing or may be suffering from depression or anxiety but because they don’t really understand the implications of biting, they won’t moderate their own behavior. This is why it is the responsibility of the owner to train dogs not to bite.

The following tips should help you teach your dog not to bite. First of all, you should react loudly and seriously when your dog bites you, even in play. A loud yip or cry of pain, even if feigned, can teach your dog that he has behaved inappropriately. This should startle your dog to release his grip and at this point you can praise your dog for letting go. Hitting your dog or acting aggressively may work in the short term but in the long run this kind of behavior is more likely to encourage biting rather than not.

canine teeth careIf your dog is biting things around the house, like shoes for example, try replacing these biting objects with appropriate alternatives. Buy some chew toys and encourage your dog to replace the shoe with the toy. When he does, be sure to praise him.

Finally, be vigilant about the signs of aggression. If you can recognize early that your dog is likely to bite, you can remove him from the situation. Body tension, erect ears, and snarling are all signs of aggression so when you notice these triggers, ask your dog to sit and stroke him to induce calm. Also, remember to always praise your dog when he demonstrates proper behavior. Reward is the single strongest motivator when it comes to behavioral intervention.

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Disclaimer: CritterCures is an educational resource, and all information herein is strictly for educational purposes. It is not intended to diagnose, treat, prevent, or cure diseases, nor is it meant to replace the (prescribed) treatment or recommendations of your veterinarian or healthcare provider. Always inform your veterinarian or healthcare provider of any products that your pet are taking, including herbal remedies and supplements.